Twins, triplets and premature labour [video]

Video author: Streaming Well
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Video Transcript
Twins and Multiples - Is a premature birth more likely?

Dr Carol Cooper, General Practitioner: The good news is that labor is not twice as painful or twice as long. But you are more likely to go into premature labor. For twins, 37 weeks is considered full term, and for triplets, it's 34 weeks. The earlier your babies are born before these dates, the more likely they are to spend time in a Special Care Baby Unit.

No one knows why preterm labor is more common in multiple pregnancies, but it's important for you to know the symptoms. These include contractions every 10 to 15 minutes, abdominal pain or a heavy feeling in the pelvis, and any leakage of blood or mucus or clear fluid from the vagina. If you're concerned that you might be going into premature labor, then phone your labor ward. Delaying labor for even just a short time can be enough to mature your babies' lungs with steroid injections and really improve their chances.

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