Twin-to-twin transfusion syndrome
Twin to Twin Transfusion Syndrome, or TTTS, is a disease of the placenta. This condition affects twins or other multiples that share a single placenta containing blood vessels going from one baby to the other.
Blood from the smaller "donor" twin is transferred to the larger "recipient" twin through interconnecting vessels causing an unequal exchange of blood.
The recipient twin is at risk for heart failure receiving too much blood from both the placenta and donor twin, forcing its heart to work harder, while the donor twin is at risk for loss of blood.
Laser surgery may be performed to correct the problem. A laser is endoscopically inserted into the womb to burn and seal the interconnecting blood vessels, restoring the normal flow of blood. Following treatment, the babies are regularly monitored.
- Last reviewed on 11/20/2012
- Irina Burd, MD, PhD, Assistant Professor of OB/GYN and Neurology at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, MD. Review provided by VeriMed Healthcare Network.
The information provided herein should not be used during any medical emergency or for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. A licensed medical professional should be consulted for diagnosis and treatment of any and all medical conditions. Call 911 for all medical emergencies. Links to other sites are provided for information only -- they do not constitute endorsements of those other sites. © 1997- 2013 A.D.A.M., Inc. Any duplication or distribution of the information contained herein is strictly prohibited.