In a remarkable testament to the power of modern technology, a 70-year-old woman, Ms Safiina Namukwaya of Masaka District, has defied the biological clock by giving birth to twins.
The joyous occasion unfolded at the Women’s Hospital International Fertility Centre in Kampala, where Ms Namukwaya, a former resident, delivered a boy and a girl, each weighing 1.7kgs.
This extraordinary feat was made possible through In Vitro Fertilisation (IVF), a medical procedure performed by Dr Edward Sali, the founder of the Women’s Hospital International Fertility Centre. Ms Namukwaya had spent five days in preparation at the hospital before welcoming her bundles of joy in a private room.
Reflecting on her journey, Ms Namukwaya shared the challenges she faced during her pregnancy, including a period of illness that depleted her savings.
Notably, she highlighted the absence of her partner, who had abandoned her upon learning she was carrying twins. Gratefully, Dr Sali stepped in, providing support and care as if he were the father of the children.
Ms Namukwaya’s decision to pursue pregnancy at her age stemmed from societal pressures and insults about her childlessness. Despite the skepticism surrounding her readiness to care for the twins, she expressed faith in God’s plan, stating,
“I really don’t know, God is in charge. You see, you can have one child and feel overwhelmed but here I am with twins at a time when I am weak.”
Dr Sali, who personally attended to Ms Namukwaya, emphasized that age is merely a number in the face of advanced technology. He noted that she had previously given birth at the age of 67, and her current pregnancy was a result of careful assessment of her health and fitness.
While pregnancies at such an advanced age are rare due to declining fertility and increased health risks, Dr Sali assured that Ms Namukwaya’s deliveries at 34 weeks were closely monitored to mitigate any complications.
The babies, expected to spend some time in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU), are in good hands, ensuring their well-being and feeding.
Infertility, according to Dr Sali, is a driving factor for individuals opting for assisted procedures like IVF. The procedure, which typically costs between Shs25m to Shs30m, has provided hope and fulfillment for Ms Namukwaya, challenging conventional expectations and celebrating the wonders of medical advancements.