Send to

Choose Destination
Am J Obstet Gynecol. 2004 Dec;191(6):2035-40.

First-trimester fetal reduction to a singleton infant or twins: outcome in relation to the final number and karyotyping before reduction by transabdominal chorionic villus sampling.

Author information

Center of Prenatal Diagnosis, Viale Sabotino 28, 20135 Milan, Italy.



The purpose of this study was to evaluate fetal outcome and maternal complications of multifetal pregnancy reduction to a single fetus or twins. To evaluate safety and efficacy of transabdominal chorionic villus sampling for karyotyping before fetal reduction.


Four hundred twenty-four consecutive multiple pregnancies were reduced to twins (255 pregnancies) or a single fetus (169 pregnancies) at 8 to 13 weeks of gestation after transabdominal chorionic villus sampling for fetal karyotyping. Fetal and maternal outcome were observed prospectively and compared with control series of twin (147) and singleton (885) pregnancies in which reduction procedures were not performed.


Transabdominal chorionic villus sampling was performed successfully in 100% of the cases. The accuracy of karyotyping was 99.2%. The overall pregnancy loss rate after reduction was 3.3%. No differences were observed between study and control series for severe prematurity, low birth weight, and neonatal deaths. Mean gestational age at delivery (35.2% vs 38.1%) and mean birth weight (2180 g vs 2873 g) were significantly lower; preterm delivery (64% vs 11%), neonatal death (3.4% vs 0.6%), and maternal complications (42.8% vs 9.5%) were significantly higher when the reduction was to twins rather than in reduction to a single fetus. Pregnancy loss rate did not differ between study series. The overall rate of chromosomal abnormalities in the study series was higher (relative risk, 2.0) than in singleton control series.


The outcome of multiple pregnancies that were reduced to a single fetus or twins was similar to that of nonreduced pregnancies; fetal and maternal complications were significantly lower in the series of pregnancies that were reduced to a single fetus. The safety and efficacy of transabdominal chorionic villus sampling and the higher pregnancy rate of chromosomal abnormalities in multiple pregnancies imply that fetal karyotyping should be advised before fetal reduction.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Elsevier Science
Loading ...
Support Center