Twin pregnancies are at high risk of stillbirths compared to mothers carrying just one baby. This risk increases 13-fold if twins share the placenta, and five-fold when they have their own placenta.
Stillbirth risk also increases as the pregnancy advances so mothers are often delivered before their due date. But early delivery poses additional risks to the baby including neonatal death….
In a new paper published in the BMJ, we identified the optimal time to deliver mothers with twin pregnancies to reduce the risks of both stillbirth and neonatal death…We found that in twin pregnancies where each has its own placenta, the risks of neonatal death from delivery was more or equal to the risk of stillbirth from continuing the pregnancy. However, when pregnancy was continued from 37 to 38 weeks, the risks of stillbirth appeared to be greater than neonatal death, resulting in 8.8 additional infant deaths per 1,000 pregnancies.
Based on our findings, we recommend that delivery should be offered to mothers with twin pregnancies that have their own placentas (dichorionic) at 37 weeks of pregnancy.
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