June 8 (UPI) -- A South Africa woman who was expecting eight babies is believed to be a new record holder after she gave birth to 10 infants.
Teboho Tsotetsi of Tembisa Township, Ekurhuleni, said his wife, Gosiame Thamara Sithole, 37, gave birth to decuplets at a Pretoria hospital.
Tsotetsi said doctors had initially believed Sithole was pregnant with sextuplets, but they later discovered their scans had missed two. He said it came as a shock when the doctors performed a Caesarian section and ended up delivering a total 10 babies.
"It's seven boys and three girls. She was seven months and seven days pregnant," Tsotetsi told Pretoria News.
The couple had previously said Sithole became pregnant without any fertility treatments.
"I am shocked by my pregnancy," Sithole said when she was expecting eight babies. "I just pray for God to help me deliver all my children in a healthy condition, and for me and my children to come out alive. I would be pleased about it."
Professor Dini Mawela, deputy head of the school of medicine at the Sefako Makgatho Health Sciences University, said it is extremely rare for someone to become pregnant with such a large set of multiples without fertility treatments.
Mawela said the babies will likely need a few weeks in an incubator before they are ready to be sent home.
"The danger is that, because there is not enough space in the womb for the children, the tendency is that they will be small. What would happen is that they would take them out pre-term because there is a risk if they keep them longer in there," Mawela said.
Sithole is now believed to be a Guinness World Record holder. Halima Cisse of Morocco took the record for most children delivered at a single birth to survive in May 2021 when she gave birth to nine babies. The previous record was famously set in 2009, when U.S. woman Nadya Suleman gave birth to octuplets in California.