OUTCOME OF PRETERM TWINS COMPARED TO PRETERM SINGLETON NEONATES: A MULTICENTER PROSPECTIVE OBSERVATIONAL STUDY IN ETHIOPIA
Keywords:Preterm , twins , singleton, neonatal intensive care units , multi-center
Background: In recent decades there has been a major increase in multiple birth rates, and the rate of twining vary from 6-9 per thousand life births to 20 per thousand live births across different areas of the world. Many studies have demonstrated higher neonatal and perinatal mortality and morbidity rates in twin deliveries compared to singleton births. This study was aimed to compare the outcomes of preterm twins and preterm singletons.
Methods: A prospective, observational multicenter study was conducted from July 2016 to May 2018 in five tertiary hospitals in Ethiopia. All preterm, liveborn infants born at or transferred at less than 7 days of life to one of the study hospitals with an estimated gestational age below 37 weeks were included.
Results: A total of 3,703 preterm neonates admitted to participating neonatal intensive care units were included in the study, of which 1171(31.6%) were twins. After adjusting for birth weight and gestational age, the mortality rate for preterm singletons of 31.0% was higher than the mortality rate for preterm twins of 24.8%, which was statistically significant (p-value = 0.001), OR of 1.37 (95% CI: 1.15 to 1.64). The study also identified an inverse relationship between birth weight and gestational age, and mortality. Male singletons were more likely to die than male twins (440 (32.4%) vs. 141 (23.4%); AOR 1.56 (95% CI: 1.22, 1.99); p=0.001)
Conclusion: Our study showed that the mortality of a singleton preterm infant was significantly higher than the mortality of a preterm twin infant.
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