South Dakota Woman With Suspected Kidney Stones Instead Gives Birth to Triplets

August 17, 2019 Updated: August 17, 2019

A South Dakota woman who was rushed to the hospital with what she thought was kidney stones turned out to be in labor with triplets.

“I figured it was kidney stones because I’ve went through them before,” Dannette Giltz, of Sturgis, told KOTA.

Giltz said she “never felt movement” and that she “never got morning sickness” throughout her pregnancy, according to a note on a Facebook fundraiser.

She said the pain from what she thought were kidney stones was so severe that “all I could do was lay in bed and cry.” After going to urgent care for what she thought was surgery to break up the stones, Giltz instead “ended up having triplets, one boy, two girls.”

Already a mother of two, Giltz told KOTA she and her husband hadn’t planned to have more children.

“You don’t ever see triplets being conceived naturally, let alone going 34 weeks without knowing,” Giltz said, according to the KOTA report. “I go to the doctor’s thinking I’ll have surgery for kidney stones and end up going into labor with a C-section that night. It’s crazy.”

The triplets—named Blaze, Gypsy, and Nikki—were born on Aug. 10, in what Giltz described in a Facebook post as a “huge shock.”

“They are five days old tonight,” Giltz wrote in a follow-up post on Aug. 15, adding that the babies were healthy, “progression is perfect,” and that she expected they would come home soon.

Woman Gives Birth on Flight Not Knowing She’s Pregnant

In a similar case of an unanticipated birth, a Canadian woman gave birth several years ago over the Pacific Ocean on a Tokyo-bound flight from Calgary on Mother’s Day, without earlier realizing she was pregnant, reported Global News.

Ada Guan, 23, was 37 weeks pregnant, but boyfriend Wesley Branch told the Canadian news outlet that neither of the two had any idea Guan was pregnant.

A pregnancy test had come back negative and even a visit to the doctor failed to confirm that she was expecting.

Labor on the plane started with Guan saying she had an upset stomach.

“She told me, ‘Something fell out of me.’ I lifted up her pants and I saw a head and then I heard, ‘Wah.’

“I thought, ‘Oh my god, I think we have a kid,'” Branch told Global.

A doctor on board Air Canada Flight 009 helped deliver the healthy baby girl.

Cryptic Pregnancy

While many women who have been through pregnancy may find it hard to believe, the phenomenon of being unaware of being pregnant is surprisingly common.

The official term is called “cryptic pregnancy,” and it refers to a woman not knowing she’s pregnant until the 20th week (about half way to term). This happens in one out of every 475 pregnancies, according to one study cited in Cases like Guan’s, where she didn’t know she was pregnant until labor, happen in one out of every 7,225 births.

It is also not uncommon for a pregnancy test to come back negative and for doctors to miss a cryptic, or stealth, pregnancy. Sometimes the mother-to-be senses she’s pregnant, but when it isn’t detected medically she’s left in a confused or distressed state. For this reason, cryptic pregnancies used to be called “denied pregnancy.”

Other recent inflight births include an incident earlier this year in which a woman went into labor on a Philippine Airlines flight to Manila, prompting an emergency landing in Hyderabad, India.

In February of this year, a woman gave birth to a baby on a JetBlue flight to Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport in Florida, from Luis Muñoz Marín International Airport in San Juan, Puerto Rico.

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