IVF and Twins

By Dr. Kalan on September 13, 2019


Baby shoes for boys and girlsDr. Nurit Winkler and Dr. Marc Kalan have helped countless couples and individuals throughout the greater Los Angeles, CA area build families through in vitro fertilization (IVF) and other treatments. While effective, we always let patients know that IVF comes with a risk of multiple births.

Let’s take a moment to consider the likelihood of twins and triplets through IVF, why the chances are higher, and what you have to consider before deciding if IVF is right for you.

The Chances of Having Twins Through Natural Conception

According to numbers from the American Society for Reproductive Medicine (ASRM), the chances of having multiple births naturally is pretty low.

  • You have a 1 in 250 chance of having twins
  • You have a 1 in 10,000 chance of having triplets
  • You have a 1 in 7000,000 chance of having quadruplets

The Chances of Multiple Births During IVF

If you undergo IVF or any other assisted reproduction procedure, your chances of multiple births are significantly higher.

According to findings by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), one-third of all twins in the United States are born through IVF and assisted-reproduction methods; three-quarters of all triplets are born from IVF and assisted reproduction techniques.

So why is that?

Why Multiple Births Are More Likely During IVF

When performing embryo transfer, multiple embryos are typically used. This increases the chances of successful pregnancy and live birth, and avoids the need for an additional IVF cycle. Since multiple embryos are used, the chances of having twins are increased. It’s as simple as that.

Why Multiple Births Could Be an Issue for Parents

The team at Los Angeles Reproductive Center always discusses the potential of multiple births with patients because of the difficulties that may result from having twins and triplets.

For one, multiple births could lead to a number of health risks for the children as well as the mothers. Premature birth is more likely with multiple babies being carried to term, and could mean serious medical issues for mothers given the strain on their bodies.

In addition, raising twins and triplets is a serious drain on financial resources. You may need to reconsider your living situation in order to raise two or three children well. Having children is lovely, but their well being and your needs have to be considered in all of this.

Ways of Reducing Chances of Multiple Births During IVF

Fertility specialists have worked on ways of reducing multiple births in recent years. Generally, the best option for reducing the risk of multiple births is using fewer embryos during the IVF process. Fewer embryos may increase the chances of a failed IVF cycle, but it reduces the risk of multiple births as well.

Weighing All Risks and Benefits of IVF Treatment

It’s important that patients understand all of the risks and benefits involved in IVF treatment. That is why we take time to discuss these issues in full detail as part of the consultation process. It’s part of what makes our team of fertility specialists so trusted and well regarded.

Learn More About IVF

For more information about IVF and whether or not it’s ideal for you and your needs, be sure to contact our team of fertility specialists. The team at Los Angeles Reproductive Center can be reached by phone at (818) 208-5481.

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