Page last updated at 19:04 GMT, Friday, 21 May 2010 20:04 UK

Sextuplet baby boy dies in John Radcliffe Hospital

John Radcliffe Hospital
The babies are in intensive care in the hospital

One of the sextuplets born at the John Radcliffe Hospital in Oxford has died.

Vicky Lamb, 31, of Oxford, gave birth to six babies on 14 May - 14 weeks early - after fertility treatment.

The babies - four girls and two boys - ranged in weight from 1lb 5oz (0.6kg) to 1lb 15oz (0.9kg). The surviving babies remain in a critical condition.

Family spokesman Max Clifford said one of the boys had died earlier adding: "[The parents] are hoping and praying that the others are going to survive."

We're taking every second, every minute, every hour as it comes
Max Clifford, family spokesman

Mr Clifford has been speaking on behalf of Mrs Lamb and her husband Andy, 31, since the birth.

He said: "I've just spoken to the parents. They've told me that one of the little boys died earlier on today."

Mr Clifford said of the five other babies: "They're all fighting for survival. We're taking every second, every minute, every hour as it comes.

"They're with the best people and in the best place.

"Andy and Vicky are so upset about losing one of the little boys and are hoping and praying the others will be OK."

Older sister

He said he believed the boy who died was one of the smallest of the sextuplets.

His parents had given him a name, but have asked to keep it private, along with the other babies' names.

Their older sister Gracie has been at the hospital "virtually all the time", Mr Clifford said.

Talking about when the couple might be able to take the babies home, Mr Clifford said: "It is a long way off. They are fighting for their lives, they are still critical."

He added the Lambs thanked well-wishers who had sent hundreds of cards and messages of support.

Mrs Lamb became pregnant after taking Clomid, the same fertility drug she used before the birth of Gracie, her first child, who is now aged five.

Constantly monitored

The hospital said a large team of doctors and nurses were present at the delivery of the sextuplets or involved with the immediate management of the babies, who remain in intensive care.

Kenny McCormick, consultant neonatologist at the hospital, said: "The next few days and weeks will be critical. Babies that are born this early need a lot of specialist care.

"They are receiving round-the-clock intensive care and specialist nursing at the moment and their condition is constantly monitored."

Live births of sextuplets are rare, occurring approximately once in every 4.5 million pregnancies.

The most recent surviving set of sextuplets in the UK were born in Belfast almost exactly a year ago.



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