Giving birth to an identical set of quadruplets is rare indeed. We've all encountered sets of identical twins in our lifetime, and a few of us here may have known some idential triplets. But is there anybody here who can honestly say they've met identical quads? They only happen about once in every eleven million births. There are about five hundred or so sets of quadruplets in the United States, but very few are identical. In fact, there are only 28 sets of identical quads born since 1930 and 19 of them have been female. Another source claims there are fifty altogether.
The most recent occurrence of identical quads being born - with no fertility drugs, mind you - happened in Houston, Texas on March 24, 2005. Twenty-four year old Shelley Breedlove - who has a twin sister - gave birth to Adelle, Bonnie, Chloe and Daphne. Each one weighed around two pounds each at birth and when this story broke on Wednesday, May 25, they were up to five pounds each and ready to go home and meet their fifteen month old brother. They are so identical that the mother had planned to mark each of them and paint their toenails different colors so she could tell them apart.
Life for the quadruplets has not gone swimmingly so far. Each has had to have heart surgery and some even suffered brain hemorrhages in their first few days. But all are fine, now.
"We feel so incredibly overwhelmed and grateful," Shelley said. "We are just going to take it a day at a time and that is really all you can do for the next 20 years."
All of a sudden having four more additions to the family can be quite earth-shattering. As this newbie parent can tell you, having just one is a huge adjustment. But fortunately for the Breedloves, to help the couple out with their new foursome, a local builder has agreed to let the family live in a five bedroom home for free for one year.
The second-most recent set identical quadruplets - Emily, Marley, Lindsey and Sydney - was born in March 2004 to Kevin and Christine Webb of Guin, Alabama. Before that a Sacramento couple - Ornsee Khamsa and Verek Muy - welcomed a set of idential quads into the world in March of 2002. Preana, Audriani, Natalie and Melody were a month and a half premature and weighed 2 lbs 8 oz. to 2 lbs. 5 oz.