Reality TV mom Kate Gosselin recently opened up to the Huffington Post about her struggles with infertility and the fertility treatments that resulted in the births of her eight children (sextuplets and a set of twins). Her words of wisdom for moms contemplating going the same route she did to become pregnant? Think long and hard before saying yes to any kind of fertility intervention.
"I will say fertility is not a perfected science and I'm going to tell you the same thing I tell any prospective parents that are going through fertility that come to me for advice," Gosselin explains to the Huffington Post's entertainment reporter, Rob Shuter. "I've said it for years. I've said be very careful ... I am the perfect example of 'the doctor had it under control' and we ended up with sextuplets. We were shocked to death and so I just tell everyone to be extra, super, super cautious."
After her fertility problems were pinpointed as a side effect of PCOS, Gosselin successfully became pregnant with fertility assistance—a combination of Clomid (clomiphene citrate) and intrauterine insemination (IUI)—and gave birth to twin girls, Mady and Cara, in 2000. Four years later, Gosselin gave birth to Alexis, Hannah, Aaden, Collin, Leah, and Joel, again using the same method of reproductive assistance.
How common are moms like Gosselin who give birth to twins, triplets, or more? According to the fertility experts at the Cleveland Clinic, women who get pregnant while taking the drug Clomid have a 5 to 12 percent chance of twins; without any reproductive assistance, about 1 percent of women have twins. If you undergo in-vitro fertilization (IVF), your chances of having more than one child are 20 to 40 percent, depending on how many embryos are transferred during the procedure.