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Genetic and Rare Diseases Information Center (GARD)

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Twin twin transfusion syndrome


Other Names for this Disease
  • Fetal transfusion syndrome
  • Fetofetal transfusion syndrome
  • TTTS
  • Twin-to-twin transfusion syndrome
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Overview


Twin-to-twin transfusion syndrome is a rare condition that occurs when blood moves from one identical twin (the “donor twin”) to the other (the “recipient twin”) while in the womb. The donor twin may be born smaller, with paleness, anemia, and dehydration. The recipient twin may be born larger, with redness, too much blood, and increased blood pressure, resulting in an increased risk for heart failure. Treatment may require repeated amniocentesis during pregnancy. Fetal laser surgery may be done to interrupt the flow of blood from one twin to the other. After birth, treatment depends on the infant's specific symptoms. The donor twin may need a blood transfusion to treat anemia. The recipient twin may need to have the volume of body fluid reduced. This may involve an exchange transfusion. Medications may be given to treat heart failure in the recipient twin.[1]
Last updated: 3/5/2009

References

  1. Twin-to-Twin Transfusion Syndrome. MedlinePlus. 2007; http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/001595.htm. Accessed 3/5/2009.
Your Questions Answered
by the Genetic and Rare Diseases Information Center

Please contact us with your questions about Twin twin transfusion syndrome. We will answer your question and update these pages with new resources and information.

Basic Information

  • MedlinePlus was designed by the National Library of Medicine to help you research your health questions, and it provides more information about this topic.
  • The Twin to Twin Transfusion Syndrome Foundation has an information page that lists the top 15 questions to ask your doctor regarding TTTS. Click on the link above to view this information page.
  • The Twin to Twin Transfusion Syndrome Foundation has an information page that lists their most commonly asked questions regarding TTTS. Click on the link above to view this information page.

In Depth Information

  • Medscape Reference provides information on this topic. Click on the link to view this information. You may need to register to view the medical textbook, but registration is free.
  • Orphanet is a European reference portal for information on rare diseases and orphan drugs.  Access to this database is free of charge.
  • PubMed is a searchable database of medical literature and lists journal articles that discuss Twin twin transfusion syndrome. Click on the link to view a sample search on this topic.