A 65-year-old German woman has given birth to quadruplets after ᴜɴᴅᴇʀɢᴏɪɴɢ an ᴀʀᴛɪꜰɪᴄɪᴀʟ ɪɴsᴇᴍɪɴᴀᴛɪᴏɴ ᴘʀᴏᴄᴇᴅᴜʀᴇ. Annegret Raunigk – who already has 13 children and seven grandchildren – is the world’s oldest woman to have quadruplets. The boys have been named Dries, Bence and Fjonn and the girl Neeta.
Annegret Raunigk lives in Berlin and is an English and Russian teacher who is close to retirement. The 65-year-old became ᴘʀᴇɢɴᴀɴᴛ after ᴜɴᴅᴇʀɢᴏɪɴɢ several ᴀʀᴛɪꜰɪᴄɪᴀʟ ɪɴsᴇᴍɪɴᴀᴛɪᴏɴ ᴘʀᴏᴄᴇᴅᴜʀᴇs in Ukraine and made headline news in April when the German press revealed that the attempt had resulted in a quadruple ᴘʀᴇɢɴᴀɴᴄʏ. At the time, she said she decided to try to have another child because her youngest daughter, who is nine, wanted a little brother or sister.
In Ukraine, doctors agreed to use a ᴅᴏɴᴀᴛᴇᴅ ᴇɢɢ and ᴅᴏɴᴀᴛᴇᴅ sᴘᴇʀᴍ to ᴀʀᴛɪꜰɪᴄɪᴀʟʟʏ ɪɴsᴇᴍɪɴᴀᴛᴇ her – a process which is ɪʟʟᴇɢᴀʟ in Germany. But even Raunigk admitted to being ‘sʜᴏᴄᴋᴇᴅ’ when the ᴜʟᴛʀᴀsᴏᴜɴᴅ scan revealed she was carrying quadruplets. “I sleep very little but I know I can take care of them,” said Annegret, who will move from Berlin to a country home 300 miles west of the city to raise her new brood.Doctors were extremely concerned at the time that the very premature babies would not sᴜʀᴠɪᴠᴇ, with tiny baby girl Neeta weighing just 1lb 7oz when she was born. Neeta’s three brothers were almost as small – with Bence weighing 1lb 8oz, Fjonn 1lb 10oz and Dries 2lb 2oz – and the severely underweight babies had to be kept in ɪɴᴄᴜʙᴀᴛᴏʀs for the first week of their lives.
Experts ᴡᴀʀɴᴇᴅ that, even if they did pull through, they could suffer lifelong ʜᴇᴀʟᴛʜ ᴘʀᴏʙʟᴇᴍs including ʟᴜɴɢ, ɪɴᴛᴇsᴛɪɴᴀʟ, ᴇʏᴇ and brain ᴄᴏᴍᴘʟᴀɪɴᴛs. But Professor Christoph Buhrer has confirmed: “All have developed well, they have grown wonderfully in a short time. The children were born through Cᴀᴇsᴀʀɪᴀɴ sᴇᴄᴛɪᴏɴ but all four are now as strong and as heavy as it they had been born naturally.”
She’s a bit confused
Raunigk, who has been married five times but has largely raised her children alone, said she could not imagine another man in her life to help her out. “My experiences with men were always that they were the wrong ones,” she said.
She said she was not sᴄᴀʀᴇᴅ of the ʙᴜʀᴅᴇɴ she would face, in particular having to care for very young children at the age of 70 and beyond, or by the prospect of having four small children when Lelia reaches puberty. “I’m pretty fit now, so why should it be any different in five years’ time?” she told the interviewer.
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Video resource: Gina Kennedy