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Hum Reprod. 2011 Aug;26(8):2247-52. doi: 10.1093/humrep/der180. Epub 2011 Jun 13.

Time trends in the natural dizygotic twinning rate.

Author information

  • 1Department for Human Genetics, University Hospital Leuven, Herestraat 49, B-3000 Leuven, Belgium. catherine.derom@uz.kuleuven.ac.be

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

The natural dizygotic (DZ) twinning rate has been proposed as a reliable and useful measure of human fecundity, if adjusted for maternal age at twin birth. The aim of this study was to analyze age-adjusted trends in natural DZ twinning rates over the past 40 years using data from the 'East Flanders Prospective Twin Survey (EFPTS)'.

METHODS:

This study involved 4835 naturally conceived twin pregnancies between 1969 and 2009 from the population-based Belgian 'EFPTS'. Age-adjusted trends in the incidence of natural DZ twin pregnancies were calculated using a generalized linear model with Poisson distribution.

RESULTS:

Both the natural DZ twinning rates and maternal age at twin birth increased in a linear fashion from 1969 to 2009. When age-adjusted, we found that the trend in the natural DZ twinning rate was stable during the whole time period.

CONCLUSIONS:

According to our population-based data and after age-adjustment, a stable natural DZ twinning rate could be observed over the last four decades. Under the assumption that the spontaneous DZ twinning rate is a sensor of fecundity, this indicates a stable 'high' fecundity for this population.

PMID:
21669967
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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