Interstitial laser therapy for fetal reduction in monochorionic multiple pregnancy: loss rate and association with aplasia cutis congenita

Prenat Diagn. 2008 Jun;28(6):535-43. doi: 10.1002/pd.2025.


Objective: To evaluate experience with interstitial laser therapy for intrafetal vascular ablation in monochorionic (MC) multiple pregnancy.

Methods: MC pregnancies that underwent fetal reduction between 1998 and 2007 by interstitial laser therapy were reviewed. Indications were twin reversed arterial perfusion sequence (TRAP) (n = 10), twin-to-twin transfusion (6), discordant abnormality (7) or growth (1) and high-order multiples (6).

Results: Thirty pregnancies treated at 15 weeks (median, range: 11 weeks-20 weeks, 5 days) had no technical failures but four manifested procedure-related amniorrhexis. Four of 38 remaining fetuses suffered intrauterine death (IUFD) within 24 h, giving an early procedure-related fetal loss rate of 10% per pregnancy and 11% per fetus. A further five IUFDs occurred within 2 weeks, giving a maximum procedure-related loss rate of 27% per pregnancy and 24% per fetus. Median gestation at delivery was 37 weeks (18 weeks, 1 day-41 weeks, 3 days) for pregnancies continuing > 2 weeks. Perinatal survival was 26 of 38 (68%) in nonreduced fetuses. Two of 26 neonates (8%) were diagnosed with aplasia cutis congenita (ACC).

Conclusion: Interstitial laser therapy in complicated MC pregnancies carries significant risks of unintended fetal loss and may be associated with ACC.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Ectodermal Dysplasia / etiology*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Laser Therapy* / adverse effects
  • Pregnancy
  • Pregnancy Complications
  • Pregnancy Reduction, Multifetal / methods*
  • Pregnancy, Multiple*