Diseases & Conditions


A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

Twin-Twin Transfusion Syndrome


Synonyms of Twin-Twin Transfusion Syndrome
  • Fetal Transfusion Syndrome
  • Fetofetal Transfusion Syndrome
  • TTTS
  • Twin-to-Twin Transfusion Syndrome

Disorder Subdivisions



    General Discussion
    Twin-twin transfusion syndrome (TTTS) is a rare disorder that sometimes occurs when women are pregnant with identical (monozygotic) twins. It is a rare disease of the placenta, the organ that joins the mother to her offspring and provides nourishment to the developing fetuses. During the development of identical twins, there are always blood vessels in the fetuses' shared placenta that connect their blood circulations (placental anastomoses). In most cases, the blood flows properly through these vessels. However, in twin-twin transfusion syndrome, the blood begins to flow unevenly, with one fetal twin receiving too much blood (recipient) and one receiving too little (donor). The recipient twin may experience heart failure due to continual strain on its heart and blood vessels (cardiovascular system). The donor twin, on the other hand, may experience life-threatening anemia, insufficient nutrition and oxygen due to its inadequate supply of blood. Such an imbalance in blood flow (i.e., twin-twin transfusion) can occur at any time during the pregnancy, including during delivery.

    The effects of twin-twin transfusion syndrome can vary in severity from case to case, depending upon when during pregnancy the syndrome occurs, when it is diagnosed, and any treatment that may be given. The cause of this syndrome is not fully understood, although it is known that placental characteristics play an important role.

    Organizations related to Twin-Twin Transfusion Syndrome
    • Fetal Hope Foundation
      9786 S Holland Street
      Littelton CO 80127
      Phone #: 303-932-0553
      800 #: 877-789-4673
      e-mail: info@fetalhope.org
      Home page: http://www.fetalhope.org
    • Twin to Twin Transfusion Syndrome Foundation
      National Office
      Bay Village OH 44140
      Phone #: 440-899-8887
      800 #: 800-815-9211
      e-mail: info@tttsfoundation.org
      Home page: http://www.tttsfoundation.com



    For a Complete Report

    This is an abstract of a report from the National Organization for Rare Disorders, Inc. ? (NORD). A copy of the complete report can be obtained for a small fee by visiting the NORD website. The complete report contains additional information including symptoms, causes, affected population, related disorders, standard and investigational treatments (if available), and references from medical literature. For a full-text version of this topic, see http://www.rarediseases.org/search/rdblist.html