They’re calling it the Christmas-Tree Formation, but it’s no longer typical of any moves gracing football stadiums.
Instead, it’s been adopted to describe the arrival within a relatively short timeframe of quadruplets, triplets, twins and singletons at the neonatal unit of University Maternity Hospital Limerick.
Making up the back four were quads born to Lisa Fenton, from Caherconlish, Co Limerick, whom the hospital says “made a little bit of history” when she gave birth on October 5 to the first foursome born in Limerick in 50 years.
Newbies Alexander, Ashley, Maxwell and Kayla are the first children born to Lisa and her partner Wayne Downey and have been doing “very well” in the neonatal unit since their arrival, aided and abetted by Professor Amanda Cotter and her team.
Next to arrive on the field of play were triplets Dáire, Liam and Aisling Cussen, born on October 27 to Olive and William. All three will soon be strong enough to go home to Raheen, Limerick, according to a hospital spokesperson.
Twins Ashton and Leo Mulcahy were born on October 13 to Lydia O’Doherty and Calum Mulcahy, from Annacotty.
“We have had the pleasure of looking after quadruplets, triplets, twins and singletons in the neonatal units at various times over the years but not as far as any of us are aware all at the same time in Limerick. It is a special occasion for all of the team working here and it is a time of great joy for us as well as their parents,” said consultant neonatologist, Roy Philip.
Interspersed with the multiple births were plenty of individual arrivals, including one Maggie Roche, from Charleville, Co Cork, who, for the purposes of this story, completes the line-up.
Adare, Co Limerick-based photographer PJ Corbett, who specialises in newborn portraiture, captured the line-up.
Clinical nurse manager, Marie Carroll said that they were thrilled to get all 10 babies together for the special photo.
“Christmas has come early for some families this year. All 10 of them are doing well and should hopefully be back at home with their families before December 25,” Marie said.
Mr Philip said the dedication of their neonatal clinics teams was reflected in the wellbeing of the babies.
“It is a happy coincidence also to have them all here together as we get ready to mark World Prematurity Day on November 11,” Dr Philip said.
The Neonatal Unit at University Maternity Hospital Limerick has 19 cots but often caters for more babies. It provides neonatal intensive care, high dependency and special care to premature and sick babies of the mid-west, from 23 weeks gestation.
There are about births at the hospital annually.
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