Identical twins in Washington State will not share the same birthdate. In an unusual turn of events, the boys will instead be born approximately four months apart. Nick and Holli Gorveatt’s first twin, named Link, was born at the end of September. He delivered at only 23 weeks into the pregnancy, and according to reports is so tiny and fragile that his own parents are not allowed to hold him yet.
Holli described the experience as surreal.
Link was delivered after the twins showed signs of an in-utero condition known as “twin to twin” syndrome. What that means is one twin draws blood from the other while they are in-utero. This is dangerous for both twins—one becomes bloated and the other is extremely weakened from lack of proper blood supply.
It is an extremely rare syndrome, but is fatal in 90 percent of cases. According to a doctor at the Evergreen Health Medical Center where Holli was treated, the twins were putting too much pressure on her cervix and the amniotic sac couldn’t be contained by it.
As a result, they were forced to perform an emergency delivery to save Link’s life, and the life of his twin who will hopefully be able to stay in the womb to full term. The medical team had to manually stop Holli from delivering the second baby by closing her cervix for her.
At 23 weeks, Link has to be sustained inside an incubator in the medical center’s NICU, and has to eat with specialized tools. He faces tough odds at normal development.
It is expected that Holli will remain hospitalized until her second delivery.