Twin Pregnancy Risks Factors

Submitted by Nick on January 18, 2012

Most women undergo problem-free, healthy pregnancies. However there are certain complications that can occur in a pregnancy. A pregnancy continues for a period of nine months and there may some risks during that time. This is more so in case of twin or multiple pregnancies. It helps for pregnant mothers to be aware of the twin pregnancy risks so that they can watch out for signs and symptoms of complications. Some common twin pregnancy side effects include increased fatigue, heartburn and morning sickness. See also twin pregnancy week by week


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All pregnant mothers worry about the risk of miscarriage. The risk of miscarriage is higher in the pregnancy first trimester. Pregnancy loss that occurs before week 20 of the pregnancy is referred to as a miscarriage.

It is also one of the most commonly occurring twin pregnancy complications. There is a greater chance of one baby developing a chromosomal abnormality in twin or multiple pregnancies. A miscarriage is manifested in the form of a condition known as vanishing twin syndrome wherein 2 fetuses are detected, but only of them undergoes development. The twin that is miscarried is absorbed back again into the mother’s body. The reasons for this are unknown and there are no outward symptoms of this condition.

The typical symptoms of a miscarriage include severe cramping and heavy bleeding. Another common twin pregnancy problem is preterm labor. Labor is termed as preterm when contractions or cervical dilation occurs before pregnancy week 38. This generally happens because the uterus becomes overcrowded. Women expecting twins or multiples may experience intrauterine growth retardation wherein the baby faces problems in growth and development while in the uterus. This may occur due to infection or poor blood circulation in the placenta. One of the more serious identical twin pregnancy risks is twin-to-twin transfusion syndrome. Here one of the twins takes over the other twin’s blood supply. Therefore one baby tends to become very large while the other remains malnourished. Preeclampsia and conjoined twins are also risks associated with twin pregnancies.

There are certain twin pregnancy risk factors which increase the possibility of complications. The risk of complications is higher in women over 35 years of age. Overweight or obese women may also develop problems during single or twin pregnancies. The risk of complications reduces in women who have experienced previous pregnancies. This is because the uterus has already been stretched and hence can adjust more easily to accommodate twins. The chance of complication is higher in case of identical twin pregnancies.

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