Triplets can be what are known as Higher Order Multiples (HOM), which signifies more than two babies are being carried at one time. Although rare, it is entirely possible for women to conceive naturally with three babies.
However, fertility assistance is the strongest influential factor when it comes to having triplets. The current estimate is that around 80-90 sets of HOM babies are born each year. So if you’re pregnant with triplets, be reassured that you are not alone.
Triplets can be either monozygotic – meaning they are formed after one fertilized egg has split into three identical embryos, or they are dizygotic – meaning they are formed from separate eggs. Polyzygotic
Triplets can also occur when there is a set of identical (or monozygotic) twins conceived + another egg is released which is then fertilized by another sperm. One very cute term which is used to describe the most common form of spontaneously conceived triplets – identical twins + a fraternal sibling is “A pair and a spare”.
This means that the identical twins are always the same gender and exactly the same DNA but the “spare” could potentially be of the opposite sex and share no more characteristics than any other sibling.
The arrival of triplets is always something extra special. But sisters, Mackenzie, Macy and Madeline Garrison are even more unusual. Read more about their miraculous story by heading over to the next page…