If all goes as hoped, she'll have four more weeks to come up with four more names for the six babies yet to be born.
Karoline Byler, 30, checked into Bayfront Medical Center Monday night after a weekly prenatal visit to her obstetrician, said her husband, Ben.
Dr. Karen Raimer wanted Karoline monitored for the rest of her pregnancy after she reported some contractions. An exam showed the cervix (the neck of the uterus) had shortened. A cervix needs to remain longer and closed until delivery to support the babies. Earlier in the pregnancy, doctors had put in a device to help keep it closed but it had opened some, Ben said.
Karoline is receiving medicine to stop the contractions, Ben said. She is resting comfortably in the high risk antepartum unit, said hospital spokeswoman Nancy Waite, She did not release further details.
The optimum gestation for higher order multiples is at least 30 weeks; a normal gestation for a single baby is closer to 40 weeks.
A Minnesota woman lost four of six children when she delivered at 22 weeks, while all of an Arizona woman's sextuplets survived when she delivered at 30 weeks. If all of the babies survive, the Bylers will be parents to Florida's first sextuplets.
Karoline Byler has polycystic ovarian syndrome, which makes it difficult to conceive. When the Bylers decided to give their daughter, Zoe, a sibling, the condition had worsened. Karoline turned to fertility treatments.
The result: five boys and a girl.
Ben and Karoline have two names, Brady Christopher and MacKenzie Margaret, but they were still working on the rest. While she's in the hospital poring over baby name books, Ben and his family, who just flew in from Kansas, will start work on the nursery.
Lisa Buie can be reached at (813) 909-4604 or toll free 1-800-333-7505, ext. 4604. Her e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org.
For information, visit www.bylerbunch.com.