AKRON Ohio – Sarah Thistlethwait of Orrville held her newborn daughters again on Monday, visiting them in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit of Akron Children’s hospital.
Jillian and Jenna were born on Friday, 33 weeks into a pregnancy they had a better chance of not surviving.
The newborns are mono-mono twins.
Such twins are very rare, sharing the same placenta and the same amniotic sack during pregnancy.
As a result, Akron Children’s Hospital Neonatologist Dr. Anand Kandak says the chances are great for life-threatening complications.
“There is always a higher chance that one or both may not survive the pregnancy. There is also the possibility that neither or both of them survive the period as a newborn infant. There is also a possibility of consequences of being born with complications that may hinder their progress including development for the rest of their life,” said Kandak.
“We were 33 weeks and two days so we made it past the average. The average is 32 weeks, and we really didn’t have complications throughout which was amazing,” said Thistlethwait on Monday.
“After they took the babies out we looked at their umbilical cords and there were some knots. So, it was just a miracle that we didn’t have any problems, and that they are even both here,” she added.
The twins also captured hearts across the country after a photo was released of them holding hands after they were born. The babies were delivered at Akron General Hospital by Dr. Melissa Mancuso and Dr. Katherine Wolfe of Akron Children’s Hospital.
“I was laying there and all you heard was oh my gosh, they are holding hands, they are holding hands. As they held them up over the sheet Jillian had grasped onto Jenna so it was remarkable. I mean we just laid there and I think half of the OR was crying,” said Thistlethwait.
The twins were transferred to the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at Akron Children’s Hospital. Thistlethwait visits the twins from her room at Akron General Hospital.
By Monday the twins were already growing and getting stronger.
Jenna, who was first to arrive, weighed 3 lbs 14 oz. Her sister Jillian weighed 3 lbs 11 oz. on Monday.
Thistlethwait, who is continuing to recuperate from her C-Section delivery, expects to be released from her hospital room Tuesday.
“I think for most moms that are pregnant with this type of pregnancy thats your biggest worry, is if they were going to survive. So, it’s hard sometimes you are withdrawn, and now its just it feels like such a miracle,” said Thistlethwait.