First in Illinois to Perform Laser Surgery for Twin to Twin Transfusion Syndrome
Advocate Lutheran General Hospital is one of approximately 20 hospitals in the nation that performs laser surgery for Twin to Twin transfusion syndrome, and the only institution in the Chicago area that offers this procedure. To learn more about this procedure, please call us at 847.723.7921 or fill out our online contact form.
This intervention may be recommended for some identical twins when blood flow from the shared placenta is significantly favoring one fetus. As a result, one twin receives too much blood and the other too little. This condition occurs in about 10% to 15% of all monochorionic pregnancies, which is characterized by twins sharing a single placenta.
Without successful intervention to correct the condition, the risk of death of one of the fetuses can be as high as 80% to 100%. In addition there is a significant risk of some form of brain injury for the surviving twin. Laser surgery for TTTS increases the survival rate of at least one twin to over 80%. And, in the event that one twin does not survive, the other twin’s risk of developing complications is significantly reduced.
During laser surgery for TTTS, physicians use ultrasound to guide them as they insert a small scope measuring 1.2 to 2 millimeters, through the mother’s abdomen into the uterus. Then, using a laser that is fed through the scope, they are able to coagulate any blood vessels on the placenta which are shared by the twins. At the end of the surgery both twins have their own separate blood supply which allows for normal development.