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Wednesday, December 23, 2015

You and Your Twin

The science of twinning is fascinating in all it's aspects. And there is strong interest in twins now, as the rates of twining has never been greater. 33/1000 births in the US were twins in 2014 according to the CDC and the Prevention National Center For Health Statistics. A lot of the twin pregnancy increase has been fertility treatment. Although the rates of triplet pregnancy rate has not risen, and actually decreases. Those attempting pregnancy want to know if they will have twins, especially if taking fertility medications and there is more than one ovulating. Ultrasounds are very good at diagnosing twin pregnancies, but actually a blood test for cfDNA is considered better to diagnosis a very early vanishing twin. cfDNA tests are simple blood tests taken on moms after the 10th week of pregnancy primarily as a screen for common genetic alterations in pregnancy: such as Down's syndrome. A vanishing twin, is a pregnancy that was conceived with twins, but one failed to progress on, and the other survived thus there is only a singleton at birth. And once you have twins, the first question I get asked is how alike are they? Well if you are an identical twin, you likely share all your chromosomes: but only 50% of your genes!

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