Ladies, once more a very misleading news article is making the rounds, about a woman who was believed to be pregnant with twins, but it turned out to be triplets, and because one of the triplets was smaller, the doctor claimed that she had "gotten pregnant again". The media, which seems incapable of fact checking, did no independent research or corroboration and simply published this as fact.

This is NOT POSSIBLE. What happens in cases like this is that one of the babies is simply developing at a slower pace, probably due to being in competition with the other babies in the uterus, and is much smaller than the others. And the doctors failed to see the other baby on the ultrasound, so they are surprised by its presence. While doctors once thought that multiples where one baby seems smaller and less developed was caused by various rates of conception time, this has been fully debunked and we now know that the smaller, seemingly less developed twin, trip, quad, etc did not receive their share of nutrients in utero and thus were not able to grow properly (indeed, many of these pregnancies simply end in a loss. The ones that survive, thankfully, usually catch up over time and most of these babies are normal healthy kiddos)

Note - this happens even in fraternal multiple pregnancies. This is NOT caused by twin-to-twin transfusion syndrome but problems with the placenta that can actually happen even in single pregnancies but are most common in multiple pregnancies.

When you ovulate, the hole that the egg comes out of turns into something called the corpus luteum. This corpus luteum makes massive amounts of hormones, and these hormones stop all other eggs from developing and being ovulated (and even if one were to be ovulated, the hormones would likely have rendered it unfertilizable). This happens within 24 hours (in fact, probably more like 8-12 hours) and not 7-10 days later. By 7-10 days later, the eggs that were not needed have mostly been reabsorbed!!!
Additionally, these hormones change the consistency of the cervical mucus so sperm can't be allowed to pass through. The Fallopian tubes change, as does the uterine lining, in ways that would not allow pregnancy to occur except in a very narrow window of time. And once pregnancy occurs, there is an even bigger cascade of hormones that would prevent pregnancy even MORE so.

So why are doctors saying this? Surely a doctor knows more than you do, atomic? Well, I don't know WHY any doctor would ever say this. In 1950, maybe, and even in 1980 perhaps, but nowadays it is ridiculous, unscientific bunkum that proves the doctor in question to be either very behind the times or else talking out of their butts (probably to cover up missing one of the babies on ultrasound). It is 1000% well known, common practice that if you have a multiple pregnancy where one baby is far behind the others (this happens all the time) or even in a single pregnancy where a baby is behind where they're supposed to be developmentally, that a woman should be prepared to lose that baby because something isn't right with it. No one ever tells a woman who is measuring 7 w when she's supposed to be 8 w, "oh this is a MIRACLE you simply ovulated and got pregnant when you were already a week pregnant!" It's patently silly. We all understand it's silly when we see this phenomenon in a single pregnancy, but for some reason a handful of doctors are incapable of extrapolating this known thing that happens all the time to multiple pregnancies.

Long story short, the miracle with pregnancies of this nature are not that somehow, against all biological probability, a woman ovulated and got pregnant when already pregnant, because she didn't. It is that a baby who was measuring behind on dates and has likely been getting less oxygen and fewer nutrients than they needed, hung on and survived! That is awesome, miraculous, and wonderful in its own right. We don't need to invent a bizarre story of a one in a million pregnancy to explain it. While I never like to say something is impossible, and reserve room for strange/amazing things the human body does, by far and away the most likely explanation for a multiple pregnancy with one of the babies measuring behind the other two is that (as so often happens) one of the pregnancies just didn't receive the same level of oxygen, blood flow, and nutrients as the other.

So why does this matter? It matters because I regularly (indeed, just yesterday) have people coming to me thinking or hoping that they might have ovulated twice, the second ovulation 2+ days after the first one. It matters because stuff like this undermines people's faith in natural family planning methods, which are safer and when used properly just as effective than hormonal birth control. And, most of all, it matters because doctors are supposed to be well-informed, scientific-minded individuals who impart accurate information to their patients and a doctor who is wrong about something like this...well, what else are they wrong about???