STUDY QUESTION: What are the pregnancy outcomes for women with a twin pregnancy that is reduced to a singleton pregnancy? SUMMARY ANSWER: Fetal reduction of a twin pregnancy significantly improves gestational age at birth and neonatal birthweight, however at an increased risk of pregnancy loss and preterm delivery. WHAT IS KNOWN ALREADY: Women with a multiple pregnancy are at increased risk for preterm delivery. Fetal reduction can be considered in these women. STUDY DESIGN, SIZE, AND DURATION: Retrospective cohort study of 118 women with a twin pregnancy reduced to a singleton pregnancy between 2000 and 2010. PARTICIPANTS/MATERIALS, SETTING, AND METHODS: We compared the outcome of pregnancy in consecutive women with a dichorionic twin pregnancy that was reduced to a singleton pregnancy to that of women with a dichorionic twin pregnancy that was managed expectantly and women with a primary singleton pregnancy. Reductions were performed between 10-23<sup>6/7</sup> weeks' gestation by intracardiac or intrathoracic injection of potassium chloride, mostly for congenital anomalies. We compared median gestational age, pregnancy loss <24 weeks, preterm delivery <32 weeks, neonatal birthweight and perinatal deaths. MAIN RESULTS AND THE ROLE OF CHANCE: We studied 118 women with a twin pregnancy that was reduced to a singleton, 818 women with an ongoing dichorionic twin pregnancy and 611 women with a primary singleton pregnancy. Loss of the entire pregnancy <24 weeks and preterm delivery occurred significantly more in the reduction group compared with the ongoing twin group (11.9 versus 3.1% <24 weeks, P< 0.001 and 18.6 versus 11.5% <32 weeks, respectively, P < 0.001). In the reduction group, the percentage of women without any surviving child was significantly higher compared with the ongoing twin and primary singleton group (14.4, 3.4 and 0.7%, respectively, P < 0.001). Median gestational age was 38.9 weeks (interquartile range (IQR) 34.7-40.3) for reduced pregnancies, 37.1 weeks (IQR 35.3-38.1) for ongoing twin pregnancies and 40.1 (IQR 39.1-40.9) for primary singletons (P < 0.001 for all comparisons). LIMITATIONS, REASONS FOR CAUTION: The main limitations of the study were its retrospective character, and the fact that indications for reduction were heterogeneous. WIDER IMPLICATIONS OF THE FINDINGS: In women with a dichorionic twin pregnancy fetal reduction increases median gestational age only at considerable risk of complete early pregnancy loss. STUDY FUNDING/COMPETING INTEREST(S): The study was not funded. None of the authors has conflicts of interest.

congenital abnormality, fetal reduction, pregnancy outcome, twin pregnancy
dx.doi.org/10.1093/humrep/dev132, hdl.handle.net/1765/82897
Human Reproduction
Erasmus MC: University Medical Center Rotterdam

van de Mheen, L, Everwijn, S.M.P, Knapen, M.F.C.M, Haak, M.C, Engels, M.A, Manten, G.T.R, … Pajkrt, E. (2015). Pregnancy outcome after fetal reduction in women with a dichorionic twin pregnancy. Human Reproduction, 30(8), 1807–1812. doi:10.1093/humrep/dev132