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Vanishing Twin Syndrome: Causes

Vanishing twin syndrome is the spontaneous loss, or miscarriage, of 1 growing child early in a a number of being pregnant, normally leading to a traditional singleton being pregnant. It could even be known as disappearing twin syndrome.

Typically the time period “vanishing twin” is used for any being pregnant through which one child in a a number of being pregnant is misplaced whereas the opposite survives, even when the dual has not technically vanished. Normally, the time period is reserved for a twin that vanishes within the first trimester.

How Widespread Is Vanishing Twin Syndrome?

Research counsel that vanishing twin syndrome happens earlier than the twelfth week of being pregnant in round 36% of pregnancies with two fetuses, and in additional than 50% of pregnancies with three or extra fetuses. Researchers suspect, nevertheless, that vanishing twin syndrome could also be much more frequent, as a result of it might often go undetected.

In a number of pregnancies which have continued past 20 weeks, researchers estimate that about 2.6% of dual gestations and 4.3% of triplet gestations shall be affected by fetal loss of life. Nonetheless, these are typically not thought of vanishing twin pregnancies.


In some circumstances, the lack of the dual could also be accompanied by miscarriage signs, comparable to vaginal bleeding and recognizing. Different signs may embrace uterine cramps or pelvic ache. These signs can happen through the first trimester of being pregnant and should go unnoticed.

If hCG ranges are being measured, they could present a slower rise than can be anticipated in a usually growing twin being pregnant. Low hCG ranges in vanishing twin syndrome are normally current from the primary days of implantation. It could be reassuring to a father or mother to know that loss had nothing to do with one thing they did or didn’t do.


Vanishing twin syndrome is often identified by ultrasound. If an early ultrasound exhibits a twin being pregnant, however a the father or mother experiences signs of miscarriage or lower-than-expected hCG ranges, or just one heartbeat could be detected by way of Doppler, a healthcare supplier might suspect vanishing twin syndrome.

A follow-up ultrasound can decide if one twin has been misplaced. It could present one usually growing child alongside a blighted ovum. Moreover, analyzing the placenta after beginning offers helpful info as nicely.

A vanishing twin will doubtless not be recognized if no ultrasounds have been performed previous to the lack of the dual.

Causes of Vanishing Twin Syndrome

If you happen to misplaced one among your infants throughout a a number of being pregnant, there is not any cause to consider that it occurred due to something you or anybody else did or didn’t do. Some circumstances of vanishing twin syndrome happen due to chromosomal abnormalities within the misplaced child, however in different circumstances, researchers don’t absolutely perceive why one twin is misplaced.

There seems to be a major improve in vanishing twin syndrome in recent times. Since many vanishing twins would by no means be detected with out early ultrasound, advances in know-how may very well be a part of the explanation for the rise. As well as, fertility therapies have gotten extra frequent and sometimes improve the possibility of multiples. This may increasingly even be an element.

Components Influencing Vanishing Twin Syndrome

Though more often than not there isn’t a recognized trigger for vanishing twin syndrome, there are some elements that could be related to this situation, together with:

  • Superior maternal age (normally greater than 30 years) 
  • Assisted reproductive methods (ART)
  • Small placenta or different anatomical abnormalities of the placenta
  • Sure genetic and teratogenic elements


Usually, and particularly when vanishing twin syndrome happens within the first trimester, no remedy is important for the pregnant father or mother or the remaining fetus. If a twin dies later in being pregnant, there’s a threat of preterm labor, an infection, or hemorrhaging. In these circumstances, healthcare suppliers will prescribe remedy applicable for these circumstances.

Though there’s some debate round this, there’s proof that there could also be a better threat of being pregnant issues after a twin vanishes. A number of research have now checked out infants who had a vanishing twin in comparison with infants that have been conceived with no twin or had a wholesome twin.

A number of outcomes have been famous, however normally, the chance of beginning defects and problems seems to be larger in infants who had a vanishing twin. The rise in dangers seems to be most typical with the lack of a co-twin between 6 and eight weeks gestation.


Problems might embrace:

For these causes, your healthcare supplier may need to hold a more in-depth eye in your being pregnant for those who had a vanishing twin. Nonetheless, it is vital to notice that normally of vanishing twin syndrome, the surviving child is just not adversely affected.

If the Twin Would not Disappear

Most frequently the vanishing twin is absorbed by the father or mother’s physique in order that there isn’t a proof of the dual on the time of supply. Typically, if a twin vanishes between 15 and 20 weeks gestation, a fetus papyraceous stays. It is a paper-thin remnant of the fetus that could be delivered together with the placenta.

Uncommonly, a teratoma tumor, through which there are some remnants of fetal tissue, comparable to hair or enamel, might happen within the surviving twin (this isn’t harmful to the infant).


If in case you have been identified with vanishing twin syndrome, you in all probability have a whole lot of blended feelings. It is regular to grieve the infant you misplaced whereas additionally feeling reduction that your different child survived.

You shouldn’t really feel that it’s a must to decide and select between your feelings. You aren’t dishonoring both child for those who undergo a traditional grieving course of whereas persevering with to eagerly anticipate your wholesome child.

In case you are struggling to deal with the lack of the co-twin, communicate to your healthcare supplier or discuss to a psychological well being skilled. They’ll provide recommendations on how finest to deal with your loss and nonetheless embrace your being pregnant.

A Phrase From Verywell

If in case you have been informed that you just skilled vanishing twin syndrome, it may be a problem to deal with this information—even when the remaining child is completely wholesome. However relaxation assured there’s nothing that you just did or did not do this brought on the co-twin to fade. More often than not, the explanation for the loss is unknown.

In case you are combating nervousness over your being pregnant or the well being of the co-twin that you’re nonetheless carrying, discuss to your healthcare supplier. They will help ease your issues concerning the well being of your child and your being pregnant.

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