Human Rights

1 in 264,000 chance: Mother of twins naturally conceives rare fraternal triplets

In April, a Virginia mom of an 8-year-old son and six-year-old twin sons doubled the size of her brood from three… to six! On April 12th, Monique Davual’s family welcomed fraternal triplets, son Jihad and daughters Mielle and Noelle, into the world via Cesarean section at 33 weeks gestation. 

Monique told Good Morning America she’d previously said raising her twins was “easy.” She quipped, “So I guess maybe God said, ‘You kept saying it was easy. I got something for you. Let’s see what you can do with three.'” 

The intense morning sickness Monique experienced with six-year-old twins Nasir and Sincere tipped her off to the possibility that she was expecting multiples again. She commented to GMA, “I was very sick, so I said, ‘It’s either a girl, or I’m pregnant with multiples [again].’” 

Crazily enough, a coworker jokingly warned Monique that she might be expecting triplets this time around. That coworker was Monique’s first call after learning that she was indeed expecting three babies. What’s more, Monique told PEOPLE, after the doctor’s appointment when she learned she was expecting triplets, she called the venue she had booked for a 30th birthday bash and scheduled a gender reveal party instead.

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She worked until she was four months pregnant and then underwent prenatal checkups every other week to monitor the babies’ health as well as her own. Fortunately, despite being born seven weeks early, all three were relatively healthy at birth and even went home from the NICU several weeks ahead of their original due date.

Monique’s pregnancy history is particularly unusual given that all of her children were conceived naturally. Riverside Regional Medical Center in Newport News, Virginia, the hospital where Monique gave birth, said in a statement, “This phenomenon is so rare that it is hard to find statistics on the occurrence.” According to a local news article, in 2011 a Georgia Tech math professor crunched the numbers and estimated the odds of having a singleton birth followed by twins followed by triplets to be approximately 1 in 264,000. 

Additionally, Monique’s babies were the first triplets born at Riverside Regional Medical Center since 2018. The hospital issued a statement saying, “We’re so proud to have been a part of this special moment for this family. Moments like these are truly a reminder of why we love being nurses. It’s been five years since we’ve seen triplets. It’s an honor to be able to provide care and support to families during the most important times of their lives.” 

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