Benison IVF – Infertility Specialist

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What Is Multiple Pregnancy?

Multiple Pregnancy refers to a case where woman carries more than one fetus in her womb at the same time. Although multiple pregnancies are uncommon accounting for only 3 percent of pregnancies. The effects on families and society is immense. Usually, these pregnancies are the result of either division of a single fertilized egg or the release and fertilization of two or more eggs. The roadmap of many pregnancies is often ruled by excitement and extraordinary challenges.

What Are The Symptoms Twin Pregnancy?

The experience of carrying twins consists of physical and emotional twin pregnancy symptoms. Here are some of the twin pregnancy symptoms-

  • Rapid weight gain
  • Expanded belly earlier in pregnancy
  • Increased appetite and food cravings
  • Heightened fatigue and exhaustion
  • Swollen and tender breasts
  • Intense backache and pelvic pain
  • Increased frequency of urination
  • Morning sickness-nausea and vomiting
  • Shortness of breath
  • Higher levels of fetal movement and kicks
  • Hormonal fluctuations leading to mood swings
  • Feeling full in meals due to limited space in the abdomen
  • Increased chances of having stretch marks

What Are The Causes Of Multiple Pregnancy?

Multiple pregnancies can be influenced by various factors. Maternal age plays a role, as women over the age of 30 are more likely to conceive twins. Family history also contributes to the likelihood of multiple pregnancies, as having a close relative who experienced a multiple pregnancy increases the chances.

Additionally, certain ethnic backgrounds, such as African and African-American, have a higher incidence of twins. Furthermore, fertility treatments significantly increase the likelihood of multiple pregnancies.

Assisted reproductive technologies (ART) іn vitro fertilisation (IVF) frеquently involve thе transfеr of multіplе embryos, which also raises the likelyhood of  twins and other multiples to increase the likelihood of a succеssful concеption.

Complications of Multiple Pregnancy

What Causes Twin Pregnancies?

You’re probably wondering why some women end up with multiples, while others don’t. There are several predisposing factors behind this especially for fraternal twins.

  • Fertility Drugs

There are treatments that cause more than 1 egg to develop and ovulate, making it more likely that you conceive with twins or more.

  • In vitro fertilisation (IVF)

IVF can result in a multiple pregnancy if more than one fertilised embryo is transferred to the uterus and then develops into fraternal twins. In some uncommon cases, a single fertilised embryo may split into identical twins after transfer.

  • Age

Women over 35 are more likely to release two or more eggs during a single menstrual cycle than younger women. So, older women are more likely to become pregnant with multiples.

  • Genetics

Having identical twins has no genetic inheritance pattern. But, fraternal twins tend to run on the mother’s side of the family. A woman with a mother or sister who have had fraternal twins are about twice as likely to conceive fraternal twins themselves as there is a genetic predisposition for some women to ovulate more than one egg per cycle.

What Are The Risks Of A Twin Pregnancy To The Babies?

Multiples have a tendency to have growth problems than single babies. In fact, twins are called discordant if one fetus is much smaller than the others. Even in fraternal twins with separate placentas, they still have a high risk of premature birth or growth restriction. Discordant growth is common with multiples, but it may not always signal a problem if mild (less than 20%).

There are cases where the babies’ restricted growth are caused by twin-to-twin transfusion syndrome (where the blood flow is shunted from one fetus to the other when sharing a placenta) or problems with placental insufficiency or the umbilical cord. If growth restriction is suspected in one or both fetuses, frequent ultrasound exams may be done to track their growth.

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