When Lindalva da Silva’s water broke at just 24 weeks into her pregnancy doctors had to perform a rare procedure to save her twin boys. Her Boston-area premies were born 24 days apart — and both survived.
Fraternal twins Alexandre and Ronaldo Antunes are doing well and are scheduled to leave Boston’s Tufts Medical Center later this month. The survival of both children is unquantifiably rare, according to Tufts Media Director Julie Jette.
“It does happen that the other twin remains in utero, but the second baby typically doesn’t survive,” Jette told Patch. “They’re both healthy and barring any unexpected hiccups, they are on schedule to leave the 18th.”
“Both babies are doing well in the Tufts MC NICU and are now virtually the same weight,” Tufts added in a statement.
The story began in late February with Somerville residents Lindalva da Silva and Ronaldo Antunes, who’d been trying to have children for more than a year. When Linda started going into labor so early into her pregnancy, she dreaded what could happen next.
“It wasn’t time. It was too early. I knew I could lose the babies,” she told ABC’s Boston affiliate WCVB.
The couple rushed to Tufts Medical Center in downtown Boston to give birth to their two boys. But the delivery went awry after the birth of the first child, Alexandre, March 2.
“The labor slowed down after the birth of the first child,” Jette said. So, the parents’ OB-GYN Sabrina Craigo, Tufts chief of Maternal Fetal Medicine, opted for a delayed labor for the second child.
More than three weeks later, on March 26, the doting parents welcomed their second boy, Ronaldo, the father’s namesake.
“This was unique in many ways, including that both of the twins are doing well,” Craigo told WCVB.
Tufts says the procedures called “delayed interval deliveries” are extremely rare.
“It’s even less common to have nearly a month in between births and almost unheard of for both babies to survive and do well under these circumstances,” Dr. Errol Norwitz, chair of Tufts OB-GYN department said in a statement. Norwitz says in the two previous instances of such delivery in his 25 years of practice, the first child in either case did not survive.