Identical Webb quadruplets beat 8 million to 1 odds

By Lesley Jenkins
star staff

Born almost ten weeks premature and weighing less than 2-and-a-half pounds each, four tiny babies are still defying odds set by doctors and their family.
   On March 17, Christine and Kevin Webb welcomed quadruplet daughters into the world at the University of Alabama of Birmingham Hospital.
   The odds were stacked high against the babies and their mother, who is a Carter County native. Conceiving spontaneous quadruplets is a feat in itself, but the odds of the girls being identical are nearly 8 million to 1, according to Dr. John Hauth, chair of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at the hospital.
   The doctor, who delivered the sisters, said the evaluation of the placenta and results of an Rh antigen panel of the quadruplets' blood provides "at least 99 percent confirmation they are identical" and called it an "amazingly rare event."
   Also, Christine Webb was able to carry the babies to 30 weeks gestation. This increased their chances of being born healthy. She was hospitalized at UAB since Feb. 24 to receive more extensive treatment and extend pregnancy as long as possible.
   Webb has been followed closely throughout her pregnancy by maternal-fetal medicine specialists at UAB and has received individualized care in UAB's maternal-fetal medicine facility which specializes in treating women at high risk of preterm delivery to optimize birth outcomes.
   Emily Morgan, weighing 2 pounds, 4 ounces, and Marley Alaina, weighing 2 pounds, 3.25 ounces, were born at 6:13 p.m. CST. Lindsey Reagan, weighing 2 pounds, 3.25 ounces, was born at 6:14 p.m. Sydney Micheala was born at 6:16 p.m., weighing 2 pounds, 4.5 ounces.
   They were never on ventilators and are breathing room air. All four are listed in good condition. Dr. Hauth said the chances of producing naturally conceived quadruplets are one in a million. The length of gestation "increases the rarity of this situation to one in 8-to-12 million," he added.
   A fund for the Webb quads has been established with a $4,000 gift from UAB's Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology. For more information on how to contribute, call (205) 558-4315.
   Kevin, 39, and Christine, 31, have two other daughters, Amber, 12, and Calina, 10. Also welcoming the babies are Kevin's daughter LaShae, 17, and son Blake, 15.
   Grandparents are Elaine and Mark Gulow, formerly of the Wilbur Dam area, David Keith and Connie Hopson, of Honolulu, Hawaii, and Robert and Carolyn Webb, of Winfield, Ala. Great-grandparents are Elmer and Elsie Carden, Horseshoe community, Arlin and Faye Hopson, Elizabethton, and Roberta Mitchell, Sterling Hills Apartments, Elizabethton. The girls are also welcomed by great-great-grandmother Ruby A. Hardin, Elizabethton.