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Study looks at best timing to safely deliver twins - WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

Study looks at best timing to safely deliver twins

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LONDON -

Alexandra Moores is 32 weeks pregnant with twins. Doctors plan to deliver her babies at 37 weeks.

"You don't want them to come too early and be really small," Moores said.

Now, a new study finds twins delivered at 37 weeks, just shy of full term, have the best chance of survival.

"We are trying to balance the risk of stillbirth-- that is increased as the pregnancy is prolonged-- versus the risk of neonatal death and diseases that occur should you be delivered too early," said Dr. Basky Thilaganathan of St. George's Hospital.

Researchers discovered waiting until week 38 to deliver twins increased the risk of stillbirth by about 1 percent. Previous studies have also shown that women who give birth to twins are more likely to have complications.

"Because of that risk, many clinicians are prone to try and deliver these pregnancies earlier than what they planned to and that exposes the babies to risk of prematurity," Thilaganathan said.

Moores says she trusts her doctor.

"I feel like I'm in good hands and hopefully will make it to 37 weeks," she said.

Researchers hope their findings will help other obstetricians make informed decisions for their patients.

This study looked at uncomplicated pregnancies that involved babies who don't share a placenta. The findings are in this week's British Medical Journal.

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