A quadruplet pregnancy is always high-risk and requires careful planning. Early delivery by elective caesarean is common practice to prevent an emergency situation - such as the mother going into labour far from medical help.
Some of the risks to the mother include;
• Gestational diabetes
• Subsequent fertility issues
The risks to the children are
• Low birth weight
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• Breathing difficulties
• Premature birth
How rare are quadruplets?
• Rates of triplet and higher order births in Europe range from 0.1 to 1.5 per 1,000 women
• In Western countries multiple births have increased due to fertility treatment.
• Quadruplets are still very rare. One study found 12 quads out of 2.5 million births in low and middle-income countries.
• Some African countries have higher twinning rates. Benin has the highest incidence of twins in the world, and the Yoruba in Nigeria are also more likely to have twins.