A South African has once again confirmed that “Africa is the cradle of humanity”. Originally from Tembisa township in Ekurhuleni, 37-year-old Gosiame Thamara Sithole has given birth to 10 babies, breaking the Guinness World Record held by Malian Halima Cissé who gave birth to 9 children in Morocco last month.
South African Gosiame Thamara Sithole, who had previously birthed 6-year-old twins, delivered 7 boys and 3 girls by Caesarean section, two more than doctors had previously detected during medical examinations at a Pretoria hospital.,
Her husband Teboho Tsotetsi told Pretoria News that her pregnancy was natural because she did not undergo fertility treatment.
Speaking to the newspaper, Teboho Tsotetsi revealed that his wife Sithol gave birth to their bundles of joy 29 weeks after the start of her pregnancy. “It’s 7 boys and 3 girls. She was seven months and seven days pregnant. I am happy. I am emotional. I can’t talk much. Let’s talk again in the morning please,” Tsotetsi said.
In an interview at their family home in Tembisa last month and whose publication was delayed at the couple’s request for security and cultural reasons, Sithole said she was shocked and fascinated by the pregnancy. She said she was in a state of disbelief when doctors told her earlier this year that she was expecting six children (sextuplets) before further scans showed they were in fact octuplets.
Two more could not be detected initially, Sithole said. “I am shocked by my pregnancy. It was hard at first. I was sick. It was hard for me. It’s still hard but I got used to it now. I don’t feel the pain anymore, but it’s still a bit hard. I just pray that God will help me deliver all my healthy children, and my children and I will come out alive. I would be delighted,” she said.
“It’s a pretty special situation. I don’t know how often this happens. This is an extremely high risk (pregnancy). It is a very complex and high risk situation. The danger is that, because there is not enough space in the womb for children, the tendency is that they will be small. What would happen is that they would withdraw them prematurely because there is a risk if they keep them longer. The babies will come out small, the chances of survival compromised. But it all depends on how long she has worn them,” said Professor Dini Mawela, deputy director of the medical faculty of the Sefako Makgatho University of Health Sciences.
Sithole broke the record for most children of the same pregnancy held by Malian Halima Cissé, who gave birth to nine children (nonuplets) in a hospital in Morocco last month. Prior to Halima, the record holder for the most children born in a single birth to survive would be American Nadya Suleman, who gave birth to 8 children in 2009. Her octuplets were conceived through in vitro fertilization.