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Gestational age, morbidity and mortality among twin births in New South Wales, Australia 2003-2014: A cohort study.

  • Ibiebele, Ibinabo1, 2
  • Humphries, Jacob B1, 3
  • Torvaldsen, Siranda1, 4
  • Ford, Jane B1, 2
  • Morris, Jonathan M1, 5
  • Bowen, Jennifer R1, 6
  • Randall, Deborah A1, 2
  • 1 Women and Babies Research, The University of Sydney Northern Clinical School, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia. , (Australia)
  • 2 Northern Sydney Local Health District, Kolling Institute, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia. , (Australia)
  • 3 Biostatistics Training Program, New South Wales Ministry of Health, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia. , (Australia)
  • 4 School of Public Health and Community Medicine, University of New South Wales, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia. , (Australia)
  • 5 Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Royal North Shore Hospital, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia. , (Australia)
  • 6 Department of Neonatology, Royal North Shore Hospital, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia. , (Australia)
Published Article
The Australian & New Zealand journal of obstetrics & gynaecology
Publication Date
Aug 01, 2020
DOI: 10.1111/ajo.13101
PMID: 31782140


Evidence suggests that the trend toward early planned births observed among singletons may be evident among twin pregnancies. To describe trends in gestational age at birth, pregnancy characteristics, neonatal morbidity and mortality among twin pregnancies. Population-based data linkage study of twin births of ≥30 weeks of gestation without a major congenital anomaly born in 2003-2014 in New South Wales (NSW), Australia. Linked pregnancy and birth, hospital and mortality data were used. Generalised linear regression was used to assess linear trends. Risk difference (RD) and 95% confidence intervals were estimated. Among 28 076 eligible twin births (14 038 pregnancies), 49% of births occurred prior to 37 weeks and 69% of births were planned (pre-labour caesarean or induction of labour). There were increases over time in the proportion of twin births at preterm gestations (30-34 weeks (RD 2.1, 95% CI 0.1, 4.0), 35-36 weeks (RD 7.5, 95% CI 5.4, 9.7)) and in the rates of planned births (pre-labour caesarean (RD 6.4, 95% CI 4.0, 8.8), induction (RD 4.6, 95% CI 2.6, 6.6)). There was no significant change in stillbirth or neonatal death rates, but there was an increase in neonatal morbidity over the study period. Concurrently, there were increases in the prevalence of gestational diabetes; and decreases in pregnancy hypertension, assisted reproductive technology use, small-for-gestational age and birthweight discordance. Gestational age at birth among twin births is decreasing and birth intervention is increasing. There are increasing rates of neonatal morbidity, but no overall change in perinatal mortality. © 2019 The Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists.

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