Author(s): Taylor MJ, Denbow ML, Duncan KR, Overton TG, Fisk NM
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Abstract OBJECTIVE: We sought to identify clinical factors at diagnosis that predict outcome in twin-twin transfusion syndrome. STUDY DESIGN: In this retrospective series 23 patients with twin-twin transfusion syndrome were seen in a tertiary referral fetal medicine center over a 3-year period. Ten antenatal factors were assessed to determine their ability to predict outcome by use of ordered logistic regression. These factors were the following: (1) absent or reversed end-diastolic flow in the umbilical artery, nonvisible bladder, anhydramnios, and estimated fetal weight of <3rd percentile in the donor; (2) pulsatile umbilical vein, either absent or reversed end-diastolic flow in the ductus venosus, or both, and tricuspid-mitral valve regurgitation in the recipient; and (3) gestational age at presentation, estimated fetal weight discordancy, absent arterioarterial anastomosis, and spontaneous rupture of the membranes or cervical change as pregnancy factors. Management comprised serial amnioreduction (n = 10), selective feticide (n = 5; 4 also had amnioreduction), septostomy (n = 4; 1 also had amnioreduction), and delivery (n = 2). Two patients miscarried before treatment. RESULTS: The chance of survival of both twins fell and double deaths increased linearly with increasing number of adverse factors (P =.026). A low chance of survival was independently associated with absent or reversed end-diastolic flow in the donor umbilical artery (P =.02) and with a pulsatile umbilical vein or absent or reversed end-diastolic flow in the ductus venosus (P =.03) of the recipient. The probability of at least one twin surviving was only 33\% if there was absent or reversed end-diastolic flow in the donor umbilical artery or 37\% when abnormal venous recordings were seen in the recipient. An arterioarterial anastomosis detected at diagnosis also influenced prognosis, with all twins surviving when an arterioarterial anastomosis was identified (P =.04). CONCLUSIONS: Three factors identified at diagnosis independently predict poor survival in twin-twin transfusion syndrome-absent or reversed end-diastolic flow in the donor umbilical artery, abnormal pulsatility of the venous system in the recipient, and absence of an arterioarterial anastomosis. These may have a role in the counseling of parents and in selecting the appropriate treatment strategy.
This article was published in Am J Obstet Gynecol
and referenced in Journal of Neonatal Biology