08/22/2016 11:11 EDT | Updated 08/22/2016 11:59 EDT

Mom Gives Birth To World's Second Heaviest Set Of Triplets

Babies born to a U.S. mom nearly broke the world record for heaviest set of triplets, weighing a combined total of nearly 20 pounds!

Kate Tipton, from Knoxville, Tennessee, described her pregnancy to WBIR, saying: “It was like I had a toddler in my tummy.”

The Tipton family is growing by 3! TRIPLETS due in early March! #tiptontriplets

A photo posted by Caleb & Kate Tipton (@c_k_tipton) on

Triplets Luke, Stella and Jack were born at 34 weeks. While they didn’t weigh anything extraordinary as individual babies – ranging from 5 pounds, 9 ounces to 7 pounds, 4 ounces – their combined weight was a whopping 19.6 pounds.

We were shocked,” Tipton told ABC News. “They weighed Jack twice. He was first. They thought, ‘That’s not right. He can’t weigh 7 pounds, 4 ounces as a triplet.’ There was so much noise and excitement and disbelief.”

Twins, triplets and other multiples are often born premature, meaning they are also born smaller, which is why the weight of Tipton’s trio was so surprising to both her, her husband Caleb and the medical staff.

In fact, doctors actually warned the Tiptons that their triplets would be very underweight. “We had doctors telling us to prepare for the worst,” the new mom told WBIR. “If they made it, they would be so small.”

Luckily, the little ones were born healthy, despite being born six weeks premature.

While the wee ones were born back in March, the Tiptons only recently consulted the Guinness Book of World Records to see if their trio was now the heaviest set to ever be born. Turns out, they missed the mark by 2.4 pounds.

The world record holder belongs to the Wilson triplets of Englewood, Colorado, who were born weighing a total of 22 pounds in July 2003.

First family photo (from early May when all the babies came home from NICU). 📷 @emjulian12

A photo posted by Caleb & Kate Tipton (@c_k_tipton) on

Despite not breaking the world record, the Tipton triplets are still the biggest to ever be born at the University of Tennessee Medical Center. Tipton’s doctor, Mark Hennessy, who has been an OBGYN for 25 years, revealed, “I've never seen triplets this big.”

Triplets Luke, Stella and Jack are now five months old and are the younger siblings of Sophia, 9, and Aubrey, 8.


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