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The incidence, maternal, fetal and neonatal consequences of single intrauterine fetal death in monochorionic twins: a prospective observational UKOSS study
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  • Katie Morris,
  • Fiona Mackie,
  • Aurelio Tobias,
  • Marian Knight,
  • Mark Kilby
Katie Morris
University of Birmingham

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Fiona Mackie
Birmingham Women's and Children's NHS Foundation Trust
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Aurelio Tobias
University of Birmingham
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Marian Knight
National Perinatal Epidemiology Unit
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Mark Kilby
Birmingham university
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Objective: report maternal, fetal and neonatal complications associated with single intrauterine fetal death (sIUFD) in monochorionic twin pregnancies Design: prospective observational study Setting: UK Population: 81 monochorionic twin pregnancies with sIUFD after 14 weeks gestation, irrespective of cause Methods: UKOSS reporters submitted data collection forms using data from hospital records. Main outcome measures: aetiology of sIUFD; surviving co-twin outcomes: perinatal mortality, central nervous system (CNS) imaging, gestation and mode of delivery, neonatal outcomes; post-mortem findings; maternal outcomes. Results: The commonest aetiology was twin-twin transfusion syndrome (38/81, 47%), “spontaneous” sIUFD (22/81, 27%) was second commonest. Death of the co-twin was common (10/70, 14%). Preterm birth (<37 weeks gestation) was the commonest adverse outcome (77%): half were spontaneous and half iatrogenic. Only 46/75 (61%) cases had antenatal CNS imaging, of which 33 cases had known results of which 7/33 (21%) had radiological findings suggestive of neurological damage. Postnatal CNS imaging revealed an additional 7 babies with CNS abnormalities, all born at <36 weeks, including all 4 babies exhibiting abnormal CNS signs. Major maternal morbidity was relatively common, with 6% requiring ITU admission, all related to infection. Conclusions: Monochorionic twin pregnancies with single IUD are complex and require specialist care. Further research is required regarding optimal gestation at delivery of the surviving co-twin, preterm birth prevention, and classifying the cause of death in twin pregnancies. Awareness of the importance of CNS imaging, and follow-up, needs improvement.