An eastern U.P. woman is one of only about 60 women in the U.S. who have a second uterus.
She’s recovering tonight after a unique pregnancy and a nearly unprecedented birth.
It’s a medical wonder.
Not only does Sarah Reinfelder of Sault Ste. Marie have a second uterus, she gave birth to twins Thursday afternoon — Kaylin and Valerie.
And she carried one of the twins in each uterus.
It’s only the 4th time in recorded history this has ever happened.
Sarah says right now, she can’t even wrap her head around that idea.
She’s just thrilled that the twins are in good health.
Pregnancy is a challenge for any couple, especially a pregnancy as unique as this.
Both Sarah and Shane have had a lot of sleepless nights.
Shane Reinfelder says it’s been a difficult thing to watch while trying to stay on an even keel emotionally.
They’re both doing a good job of that through 33 weeks of pregnancy and a double Caesarian section.
Sarah says she couldn’t believe how small the twins were when they were delivered.
For the last 6 weeks, the Reinfelders have lived in Marquette to be close to Marquette General’s neonatal intensive care unit, the only such facility in the Upper Peninsula.
The doctors who delivered the twins say this has been as exciting for them as for the parents.
Dr. Breanna Pond of OB/GYN Associates of Marquette says she’s never seen anything like this before and probably never will again.
Dr. Connie Hedmark, also of OB/GYN Associates, says because this is so rare, they didn’t have much in the medical literature to go on for how to handle it.
She says they tried to apply general methods for delivery of twins to Sarah’s births as best they could.
There are some things the neonatal ICU is looking out for.
Dr. Julie Frei of the NICU says one of the twins is showing less developed lungs than the other, so she needs to use a ventilator for a little while.
She does say the babies and Sarah are in very good general health, though, considering what they’ve been through.
After 3 to 4 more weeks of observation, they should all be ready to go home.
Because Kaylin and Valerie each came from a different uterus, and therefore different eggs, they’re not identical twins.
When they do go home to the Soo, they’ll have quite a busy household.
The Reinfelders also have a 10-month-old son.