Newborn quadruplets' mother sings the praises of RK Khan staff

11 August 2023

  • KZN Health MEC Ms Nomagugu Simelane showers the four babies with gift hampers; and congratulates the hospital's staff and management on a job well done;
  • The mother, who is a twin herself, had been expecting triplets, but got a surprise fourth baby;
  • She also has two sets of siblings who are also twins;
  • The only boy from the set of quadruplets is named after Mamelodi Sundowns' footballer, Cassius Mailula

11 August 2023

The mother of KZN's latest set of quadruplets has sung the praises of the staff and management of RK Khan Hospital, who helped her deliver a set of healthy quadruplets.

The babies are believed to be the first set of quadruplets in the hospital's 54 year history.

Earlier today, KwaZulu-Natal Health MEC Ms Nomagugu Simelane once again displayed her benevolence when - after just one day of hearing about the quadruplets - she visited Ms Nonhlanhla Khumalo, 30, and showered her with gift hampers for all four babies.

An appreciative Ms Khumalo, who is a twin herself, expressed her gratitude. She said that, all along, she had been expecting triplets, but was pleasantly surprised when the doctors told her during delivery that there was a fourth baby coming.

Speaking on the Department's weekly KZN Health Chat multimedia programme, the shy and soft-spoken Ms Khumalo, who has two other children aged 11 and 6, said: "I'm very happy. At home, they're also happy. They can't believe it.

"God has given me an unexpected gift. I was expecting three babies, but He has given me four"

The quadruplets, named Lulonke, Lunathi, Lukhona and Mailula, were born prematurely, at 29 weeks, on 09 July 2023. The mother, who has been staying in Durban over the past few months, had arrived at RK Khan Hospital two days earlier. Having complained of lower abdominal pain, she was admitted to the high care ward for pre-term labour.

"She was given treatment which was aimed at stopping labour to progress and maturing babies' lungs as they were known to be premature. She went into true labour two days later, and the decision was made to take her to theatre for an emergency caesarean section," said Dr Dr Ilunga Nsungu, a medical officer from the hospital's department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology. The quadruplets are making good progress.

Baby Lulami was born weighing 1.05kg and now weighs 1,335kg; Lunathi initially weighed 1,2kg and now weighs 1,410kg; Lukhona weighed 1,25kg and now weighs 1,350kg; while Mailula - named after Mamelodi Sundowns hot-shot striker Cassius Mailula by his father Mzwandile Mpontshane, who is a 'Downs fan, - initially weighed 1,250kg and now weighs 1,580kg.

The babies will be discharged once they all reach the ideal weight of 1,6kg each. Ms Khumalo is being assisted by her sister in law Lungile Mpontshane to look after them.

Asked about the potential perils of delivering quadruplets, and what was done to avert them, Dr Nsungu said: "There are maternal risks related to anaesthesia such as hypotension (low blood pressure) intra operatively (during the course of a surgical operation)."

Other maternal risks include injuries to other organs during the Caesarean section, such as injury to the bowels, the bladder, and over-bleeding, he said.

"With regard to the babies, there is always a risk of infection. So, we had to ensure that the mother is haemodynamically stable, meaning her vital signs (BP, pulse, respiration, oxygen saturation) are within normal range as well as her blood profiles, among other considerations."

Reflecting on the kind of care she had received from the Chatsworth-based RK Khan Hospital, Ms Khumalo said: "I don't want to lie, I've received the best treatment. Everything went very well, and I would like to especially thank the medical staff who have helped me deliver."

A beaming MEC Simelane congratulated the staff and management of RK Khan Hospital, saying the successful delivery of the quadruplets showed that the Department has many dedicated healthcare workers who do their very best, on daily basis, to deliver the best healthcare to the community.

We congratulate the Khumalo and Mpontshane families for these babies that were delivered safely, especially considering the risks involved in a delivery of this nature - particularly for a hospital of this size.

"This delivery carries a number of challenges and risks, but the staff were able to navigate that process very well. The babies have been here for about a month, and we are very happy with their progress.

"I also want to appreciate the work that was done by the medical staff who were delivering the babies, and those who are looking after them. It is very clear that a lot of work has been done. Considering that these are the kind of patients that they've not dealt with before, they have done exceptionally well. So, we wanted to express our appreciation to them."

Dr Nsungu has, meanwhile, urged all expectant mothers to know that antenatal care is extremely important as it helps to ensure the best possible pregnancy outcome for mothers and their babies.

"Getting screened for pregnancy problems, assessing risks in pregnancy, treating any problems that may arise during the ante-natal care period, providing information to pregnant women, can make all the difference in creating conditions for a safe pregnancy and successful delivery."

Issued by the KwaZulu-Natal Department of Health

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