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The largest multiple births in history

When the people on this list said they wanted a big family, we don't think they meant this big. With the advent of in vitro fertilization, more and more women are able to have the children they might not have been able to have otherwise—and then some. One of the biggest risks of in vitro fertilization is having multiple births at the same time due to the implantation of more than one embryo in the uterus. Some women, though, have given birth to multiples naturally, and have ended up setting world records in the process. Here are the three largest multiple births in history to make you appreciate giving birth to just one or two babies at a time.

Geraldine Brodrick - Nonuplets

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If you have never heard the term "nonuplets," don't feel bad. This is the term used for having nine babies at the same time, and it is something that has reportedly only happened twice in recorded history. The first was on June 13, 1971, when Geraldine Brodrick from Sydney, Australia, gave birth to nine babies: five boys and four girls. Sadly, though, carrying so many babies at the same time can be extremely dangerous for the children. Two of the boys were stillborn and six more of the infants died in the following days. The last baby, Richard, who was also the smallest, weighing only 12 ounces at birth, was thought to have been the sole survivor, but he, too, died within the week.

Zurina Mat Saad - Nonuplets

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On March 26, 1999, Malaysian mother Zurina Mat Saad also gave birth to nonuplets. While not as much is known about this case, it is referenced often in other articles about women who have falsely claimed to be carrying nine babies at once. Zurina also had five boys and four girls, none of which lived longer than a few hours after their birth, perhaps due to having such a low birth weight. Their names were Adam, Idris, Soleh, Hud, Alshah, Fatimah, Nuh, Khadijah, and Umi Kalsom.

Nadya Suleman - Octuplets

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Chances are, you have heard of this last entry on our list. Nadya Suleman, a.k.a. "Octomom," is the only mother in history to have given birth to eight babies at the same time and had them all live. Her story is a controversial one, as Suleman was a single mother who already had six other children and money troubles when she was implanted with what was later deemed to be an unacceptable number of embryos: 12.

Regardless, the Suleman octuplets—Noah, Isaiah, Maliyah, Jonah, Nariyah, Josiah, Makai, and Jeremiah—are a veritable medical miracle. Born in Bellflower, California, on January 26, 2009, all eight babies weighed at least 2 pounds, which is much more than other octuplets have weighed at birth. This may be what gave them the opportunity to survive where other multiple-birth babies did not, and perhaps why they are all still alive and healthy 10 years later.