Emergency C-Sections, Days-Long Labor and Breech Babies: The Most Complicated Duggar Births

With 19 kids and 10 grandkids, Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar are no strangers to a knowledge of birth — and a complications.

On Monday, TLC aired a one-hour Counting On special chronicling a couple’s daughter Joy-Anna‘s tour to apropos a first-time mom. The 20-year-old was rushed to a sanatorium for an emergency C-section after finding her baby was breech — though that’s not a initial time a Duggar lady has faced hurdles bringing a child into a world. Here’s a demeanour behind during some of their many heated labors.


Perhaps a many harrowing birth knowledge in a family was when mama Michelle, now 51, welcomed her youngest child, daughter Josie, scarcely 3 months beforehand on Dec. 10, 2009. Born during 25 weeks by puncture C-section after Michelle was diagnosed with preeclampsia, Josie weighed usually 1 lb., 6 oz. (Michelle’s condition was detected when she was certified to a sanatorium to weigh pain associated to a gall bladder problem. Preeclampsia causes high blood pressure, that meant an puncture C-section was indispensable to safeguard a towering blood vigour would not be unpropitious to her or a baby.)

Eight days later, Josie’s bowel perforated. The micro-preemie was rushed from a University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences in Little Rock, Arkansas, a sanatorium where she was born, to Arkansas Children’s Hospital, her relatives during her side. At a time, her medicine Dr. Robert Arrington, co-director of a neonatal complete caring unit, told PEOPLE that Josie “developed a extemporaneous bowel perforation.” She responded to chain of an abdominal drain, and antibiotics, and did not need an open operation — smashing news for her fearful parents.

“Josie is walking a daily tightrope to keep her vitals quick and a nurses and a whole group here has been wonderful,” said Jim Bob during a time. “Years ago, a baby this tiny wouldn’t have lived an hour. We are so beholden for a ability to assistance her.”

“It is implausible what a doctors and nurses can do to save a life of this small person,” combined Michelle.

After scarcely 4 months in neonatal complete care, Josie left a hospital — usually to be rushed back a few days after after her critical signs dropped. She finally returned home for good dual months later, once she had grown to a “chunky” 9 lbs., 1 oz.

“We’re so happy that she’s doing so well,” Michelle told PEOPLE during a time. “She’s finally home, home, home. She has a double chin now. It is so precious.”


Jim Bob and Michelle’s daughter Jill, 26, welcomed her initial child with father Derick Dillard, 29, on Apr 6, 2015 — after close to three days in labor with few contractions that infrequently were right on tip of one another, within a notation apart.

Jill common a intimate sum of her son Israel David’s birth with PEOPLE exclusively. Her H2O pennyless in a early hours of Saturday, Apr 4, and the Duggar family — including Michelle and sister, Jana, 28 — all pitched in to assistance her during labor. Though Jill was anticipating for a healthy smoothness during her home in Rogers, Arkansas, Israel’s birth “didn’t go as expected.”

After her Mar 24 due date passed, Jill’s H2O finally broke 41 weeks and 5 days into her pregnancy, though complications followed. The mom-to-be tested certain for strep B, a common germ that can be eliminated from mom to baby during birth, and began holding antibiotics around an IV. After 20 hours in labor and small progression, Jill saw a gloomy mark of meconium (the beginning rubbish of an unborn infant, mostly a pointer of fetal distress) and motionless it was time to pierce to a hospital.

Once there, Jill primarily declined Pitocin (a hormone that severely speeds adult labor) and pain remedy — though after 70 hours in labor, a baby had flipped into a cross breech position (sideways and upside down), was experiencing strange heart rates and had not nonetheless descended. Upon conference a doctors’ concerns, a integrate motionless to pierce brazen with a C-section and finally welcomed their long-awaited 9-lb., 10-oz. baby boy.

“I adore our birth story because it connected us so well,” pronounced Jill during a time. “Having him here — it’s value all of it. we wouldn’t do anything differently.”

Jill and Derick welcomed their second child, son Samuel Scott, on Jul 8, 2017. After 40 hours of labor he was delivered around C-section during a hospital, weighing 9 lbs. and 10 oz.

“There’s a turn of palliate that comes with your second pregnancy,” Jill told PEOPLE before Samuel’s birth. “Derick and we have been down this highway together, so we’re comfortable. I’m usually going to see how it goes, try to be healthy and ready as most as we can. But this time we know that labor is unpredictable.”


Jill’s sister Jessa, 25, welcomed her initial child with father Ben Seewald, 22, on Nov. 5, 2015. Originally due to broach on Nov. 1 (coincidentally her one-year anniversary with Ben), Jessa went by 10 hours of contractions that roughly forced her to change her devise of carrying an all-natural home birth.

“Labor is hard,” she after told PEOPLE. “It was unequivocally intense, unequivocally long. Everything was opposite than we expected. we said, ‘That’s it! I’m done! we am going to a sanatorium and I’m going to get an epidural.’ They asked me if we unequivocally wanted to do that and we said, ‘No, we don’t, though we do.’ we wanted to try healthy if during all possible.”

Their son Spurgeon Elliot finally arrived, weighing 9 lbs. and 11 oz. — though their fun was shortly interrupted by a surprisingly frightful impulse as Jessa began draining so most that her midwife became concerned. Michelle called 911, and a new mom was rushed to hospital. After scarcely fainting, Jessa had to bear a blood transfusion and stay overnight. (Her son was after brought to her side.)

“I had dreamed about those initial moments, removing to breastfeed right away, all that — and so when we had to go to a hospital, it was a shock,” she admitted.

But looking behind on a scarcely 48-hour delivery, Jessa was all smiles.

“I can’t trust he’s unequivocally ours,” she said. “It is so amazing. He’s a miracle.”

RELATED: Gideon! Israel! Spurgeon! Your Official Guide to a Next Generation of Duggars

Jessa had a much some-more loose experience welcoming her second child, son Henry Wilberforce, on Feb. 6, 2017. Opting once again for a home birth and enlisting a same midwife and assistant, Jessa’s H2O pennyless usually before midnight on Feb. 5, and within dual hours she was experiencing clever contractions.

The TLC star after told PEOPLE she and her husband were “surprised during how quick it went,” and baby Henry was innate during 4:26 a.m., weighing 8 lbs., 11 oz. — arriving so quickly that Michelle and Jana scarcely missed a birth.

“They came during a unequivocally end,” removed Jessa. “I was already pulling when they walked in a door!”


The youngest Duggar mom, Joy-Anna, welcomed her initial child with father Austin Forsyth on Feb. 23: a healthy baby boy named Gideon Martyn Forsyth. Like her sister Jessa, Joy-Anna was set on a home birth.

RELATED: Joy-Anna Duggar Gave Birth in a Hospital Instead of during Home — Why Home Births Can Be Risky

“I motionless to have a home birth, usually since we know that it’s some-more gentle being during home,” she explained on Counting On. “I unequivocally wanted to during slightest try it, and we’re usually about 30 mins from a hospital, so it’s not too bad in box of an puncture or a change of plans.”

But after being in labor for over 20 hours during home, Joy-Anna’s midwife dynamic a baby was breech. She was rushed to a hospital, where she schooled that she indispensable an puncture C-section. “Huge” baby Gideon arrived during 3:39 p.m., measuring 22 inches prolonged and weighing 10 lbs., 3 oz.

“I consider it’s flattering amazing,” pronounced new father Austin. “God is good.”

“He’s got Austin’s nostrils,” combined Joy-Anna. “We are doing well. Love we guys, appreciate we for your prayers. We are so happy that the small one has finally arrived and we’re parents.”