Indie, Esme, Scarlett, and Evangeline Gardner are active, healthy toddlers. Helping these quadruplets live the healthiest lives possible today started with great obstetrics and maternal-fetal medicine care for their mom, Ashley, at 21 weeks during her pregnancy, and excellent preemie care during their own first weeks of life in the Newborn Intensive Care Unit (NICU) at Intermountain’s Utah Valley Hospital.
Tyson and Ashley Gardner’s family story began with an eight-year infertility struggle and then in-vitro fertilization in 2014. They were shocked and thrilled when Ashley became pregnant with quadruplets—two sets of identical twins growing in two placenta sacs. “Every flood of emotion comes through you at that moment,” says Ashley.
After months of bed rest and even in-utero surgery, the babies were delivered by C-section at 29-weeks’ gestation. “It was what our neonatologist, Dr. Stephen Minton, loves to call organized chaos,” says Ashley. “Four babies out in two and a half minutes—each baby had her full medical team around her, and I had a medical team. Everybody knew exactly what they were supposed to do, and it was perfect and very comforting.”
The girls spent two months in the NICU at Utah Valley Hospital, where Dr. Minton serves as Medical Director. “That NICU is a very special place,” says Tyson. “Our girls had everything they needed, just such incredible care. Dr. Minton and the NICU team think of every kid as their own. They really do.” Ashley adds, “I truly felt their love for each one of my children, and for us. For how stressful that time of my life was, they did everything possible to make sure I felt at peace.”
Dr. Minton says the care provided to the Gardner quads was the same as the care given to every baby. “The difference here was that it was quadrupled. One of the reasons I’m with Intermountain Healthcare is because of our focus on quality care and always striving to improve it.”
“We didn’t have to worry about the medical side of things,” says Tyson. “We were able to trust and have faith in our caregivers and focus on what we needed to do.”
The number of caregivers in the delivery room ready to care for the four baby Gardners.