TWINS AND NEURODEVELOPMENTAL OUTCOME: IMPACT OF ASSISTED REPRODUCTIVE TECHNIQUES, PREMATURE BIRTH AND INTRAUTERINE GROWTH RESTRICTION

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Mirta Starčević

Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Clinical Hospital Center Zagreb

Key words: twins, neurological outcome
SUMMARY. The proportion of twins among newborns compared to their mortality and morbidity rates demonstrates very unique demands and risks for this population. Neurological morbidity of twins is closely related to pregnancy risk factors and complications such as discordant growth, monochorionicity and preterm birth. Although assisted reproductive techniques increased the number of twins in general, the unfavorable neurological outcome due to these procedures is yet to be proved. While the most serious neurological sequellae (such as cerebral palsy) can be detected in early childhood, minor disturbances (especially cognitive, emotional, and intellectual) are manifested in later preschool or school age. Consequently, long-term follow-up of twins is needed in aim to reach the complete conclusion on their neurodevelopment outcome.