Prevalence of twin births in Pelotas, in the State of Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil

Cesar Fernando Geraldo Gilberto de Lima Garcias Maria da Graça Martino Roth About the authors

OBJECTIVES: to evaluate the prevalence of twin births in Pelotas, Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil, during three periods, and the influence of a number of factors on this occurrence. METHODS: a cross-cutting (multiple time series) study was carried out, using the database of the Congenital Defect Monitoring Program, which registers all of the births occurring in the five hospitals of the city of Pelotas, for the years 1993, 1997 and 2003. RESULTS: the mean prevalence of twin births per thousand births (‰ )t was 8.95‰ (monozygotic=2.20‰ and dizygotic=6.76‰ ). The prevalence of triplets was 0.07‰ . The total prevalence for twin births, in the case of both monozygotic and dizygotic twins rose over the period studied. The mean age of the mother (27.53 years) and the order in the series of gestations (2.35) were significantly higher in cases of twin births than in cases of the birth of a single infant (26.03 years and 2.14 respectively). CONCLUSIONS: mothers aged >30 years were responsible for the increase in the prevalence of twin births in Pelotas. The higher mean position in a sequence of gestations among mothers of twins ruled out the significance of the use of fertility treatment techniques.

Twins, monozygotic; Twins, dizygotic; Maternal age; Birth order; Income

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