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25 Mar, 2008 15:28

Russian ‘miracle babies’ arrive home

Russian quintuplets, born in the UK last year, have arrived in Moscow. Twenty-nine year old music teacher Varvara Artamkina gave birth to Liza, Sasha, Tanya, Nadya and Varya last November.

The happy parents said they were very grateful to the doctors in Britain’s clinic in Oxford, John Radcliffe Hospital, specialising in multiple births.

The babies were born 14 weeks prematurely and they had to go through a long period of intensive treatment. Only recently the doctors have admitted the girls have become strong enough to travel to their homeland.

Delighted relatives have been eagerly awaiting their arrival – with piles of diapers, baby clothes and booties. The house is upside down as last-minute preparations are made for the arrival of the new additions to the family.

“At first we were told there’d be four. I told my husband and he was so happy! We were told it was dangerous – but still he couldn’t stop smiling! And then they told us there were five! We began to think how it would be – but anyway we were very happy!” Varvara Artamkina recalls.

They were told the chances of all the babies surviving were slim – unless some were aborted. So the couple chose to travel to Britain – where specialist equipment was available to care for them. And now – it’s a story with a happy ending.

Grandmother Irina Artamkina says she’s over the moon.

“I’d like to say many thanks to all the people all over the world, who were praying for us from Kamchatka to California. I’m the happiest granny in the world, because I have five pretty little girls at once!” Irina says.

Who’s who?

Telling them apart might be a problem: the biggest difference between the heaviest and the lightest is only a hundred grammes, and there’s just a centimeter of difference from the longest to the shortest. But their parents manage.

The family is already big enough: The quins’ parents have twelve brothers and sisters and as many as eleven cousins for the girls. Nine-year old Kolya is now a proud uncle.

Now the only trouble is that there are no quintuplet prams being produced. But some good people have already given the family a bed for three. With that much help and love from all over the world – the girls are just destined for a happy future.