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Vanishing twin syndrome: what it is and how to deal with it

A desired pregnancy, despite the logical joy that it entails, is not without complications. In the case of twin pregnancies, a phenomenon known as vanishing twin syndrome. What is hidden under this appeal? Who is specifically affected?

What does the syndrome consist of?

Vanishing twin syndrome occurs when, in a twin pregnancy, one of the two fetuses disappears. “Although at first glance it is surprising, it is a fact known and corroborated by science since the 70s that between 10% and 15% of human pregnancies “It begins as a multiple pregnancy, of which only one in ten ultimately becomes a twin birth,” Peter Bourquin and Carmen Cortés highlight in their work, The lone twin.

“This means that at least one in ten people began their lives accompanied by a twin sister or brother and lost them during pregnancy, mostly during the first three months of pregnancy.

In these cases, science speaks of an evanescent twin, in reference to the fact that usually this twin does not leave any trace; However, if the gestation has been more advanced, there may be biological traces that appear during childbirth, such as a second placenta or a papyric fetus,” as we can read.

Although the existence of this fetus is unknown, early ultrasounds (5 to 6 weeks of amenorrhea) They now allow twin pregnancies to be detected very quickly.

In some cases, the fetus can be absorbed by the mother, her placenta, or her twin. This last case is rare although cases have been recorded. The fetus can lodge in the body of its brother or sister and be discovered years later.

What are the consequences?

This loss, whether expressed clearly or not, can generate a disorder that is not always detected in the surviving “twin”, although the response to this emotional impact is diverse.


Spain, the country in Europe with the highest number of mothers over 40 years of age]

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