Chances Of Having Twins with IVF

Chances Of Having Twins with IVF
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Twin pregnancies are becoming more common today, and the number of women who get pregnant with twins is also higher than in previous years. Many couples wish to have twins, but the chances of having twins naturally are very low and can’t be premeditated.

Many couples turn to IVF to get pregnant with twins. In this article, let’s discuss your chances of having twins with IVF and the risk factors involved in it, so that you can take the necessary measures when undergoing the treatment.

Chances of Having Twins With Fertility Treatments

There are high chances of having twins if you wish to undergo ARTs (Assisted Reproductive Technologies) like IUI and IVF. Though they are sometimes unintentional, parents can also choose to have twins through these fertility treatments.

Chances of having twins with IVF Treatment (Invitro Fertilization)

Fertility medications are also a part of IVF treatments. But unlike IUI, twins happen in IVF due to the number of embryos transferred into the uterus.

Some couples choose to transfer two embryos to increase the chances of success in an IVF cycle. This is because even if one embryo fails to implant, the other might be able to survive.

Twin pregnancy happens when both embryos successfully implant in the uterus, resulting in pregnancy. They are fraternal twins, non-identical, and have different DNA.

Sometimes, a single embryo might divide into two during development, resulting in identical twins. These cases are very rare and aren’t very likely to happen.

The chances of having a twin pregnancy also depend on the woman’s age. The older a woman gets the lesser her chances of having a successful twin pregnancy, either identical or fraternal.

Chances of Having Twins Naturally

You might think getting pregnant with twins naturally has more to do with luck. While this might be true, it also involves other factors like age, genetics, diet, and previous pregnancies.

Studies estimate that the chances of natural twin pregnancy is 1 in 250. There are two ways twins can be conceived: identical twins and non-identical or fraternal twins.

Identical twins

These twins are born from a single egg. This happens when a single egg, fertilized by a single sperm, divides into two and develops into two babies.

The chances of this happening are so rare that only 3 or 4 out of 1,000 births will have identical twins. Since these babies are divided from the same egg, they have the exact same DNA. They are also of the same sex, either two boys or two girls.

Fraternal twins

These twins are born from two eggs. This happens when there are two eggs in the uterus, and they are fertilized by two different sperm. These eggs implant in the uterus and result in twin pregnancy.

These twins do not share the same DNA, as they are not from the same egg or sperm. They can also be two boys or two girls or a girl and a boy. They also do not always look identical. Aside from being born from the same mother on the same day, they do not share many similarities.

How Can Twin Pregnancy Happen in IVF?

Twin pregnancy in IVF can happen in two ways: monozygotic and dizygotic twins.

Monozygotic twins:

Also called identical twins, this happens when one embryo transferred into the uterus divides and grows into two different embryos. These twins have the same DNA and look identical.

Dizygotic twins:

This happens when two embryos transferred into the uterus successfully implant in the uterus, resulting in pregnancy.

What Are The Risks Related To Twin Pregnancy With IVF?

Your fertility doctor will not usually recommend Twin pregnancies through IVF as it can pose multiple risks for you and your babies. Below are some risks of having twin pregnancies with IVF.

Pre-eclampsia

Pre-eclampsia risk can rise with twin pregnancies. This includes high blood pressure, generalized body edema, and increased protein in the urine. All of these things could cause the mother and the child to have major issues.

Gestational diabetes

Pregnancy-related diabetes increases the risk of having a larger-than-average baby. During a vaginal birth, there is a higher risk of damage to both you and the baby, as well as complications, including infants having trouble breathing, seizures, jaundice, and even problems with feeding.

Premature birth

Twelve percent of IVF twins are born before 32 weeks, making up about 60 percent of premature births. In the worst situations, this could result in the baby’s death due to increased medical difficulties.

Low birth weight

Twins born before 32 weeks have an average birth weight of less than 1.6 kg, and more than half of twins weigh less than 2.5 kg. This could lead to issues with respiration, heart health, vision, hearing, cerebral palsy, and breathing.

Cesarean section

Additionally, twin pregnancies may also require a C-section during childbirth. As a result, there may be a greater chance of hemorrhaging during and immediately following delivery. Additionally, compared to vaginal birth, c-sections require more time for healing.

Twin-Twin Transfusion Syndrome (TTTS)

TTTS is a condition where one twin has excessive blood flow, and the other has insufficient blood flow. This can occur in identical twins who share a placenta. About 10% of twin pregnancies involve this situation.

Conclusion

There are certainly some risks involved with having twins during IVF pregnancy. But it doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t try it.

If you wish to have a twin pregnancy with IVF, you can consult your fertility doctor and discuss the safest way to carry the pregnancy without harming you or your babies.

FAQs

The percentage of IVF twins is substantially greater. Studies show a 30% to 40% risk of having multiple children after fertility treatment. About 17% of those twins were produced using IVF. Twin births increased from one in 53 to one in 29 births between 1980 and 2014.

Twin pregnancies show certain symptoms that you can look out for.

  • The uterus is bigger than expected during the pregnancy month.
  • Your appetite increases.
  • Morning sickness increases.
  • You can feel the baby’s movements at various parts of the belly simultaneously.
  • Excess weight gain, particularly during the early stages of pregnancy.

The zygote splits, usually into two, between days two and six of fertilization. Each zygote then develops into an embryo, giving rise to identical twins (or triplets if it splits into three). These twins (or triplets) are called “monozygotic” twins.

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Dr. Rukkayal Fathima
Dr. Rukkayal Fathima

Dr Rukkayal Fathima, India's Leading Gynaecologist and the best fertility doctor in Chennai. She has 11+ years of experience and treated 1000+ patients. She finished her M. S., Obstetrics and Gynaecology from the Institute of Obstetrics & Gynaecology (Madras Medical College), Chennai. She is a visiting consultant at St. Isabelle Hospital, Motherhood Hospital, Rainbow Hospital & Mehta Hospital. Dr Rukkayal Fathima specialises in Obstetrics care, Early Pregnancy Scan, IVF, ICSI, TESA/Micro TESE, Menopause advice, Gynaecological surgeries and endoscopy. She is a Co-Founder of Hive Fertility, the Best Fertility Center in Chennai.

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