oa Southern African Journal of Infectious Diseases - HIV transmission in twin pregnancy : maternal and perinatal outcomes

Volume 32 Number 2
  • ISSN : 2312-0053



Background: Despite over two decades of studies of mother-to-child transmission (MTCT) of HIV, very little data is available on HIV transmission in twin pregnancies in Africa.

Objective: To determine transmission rates of the HIV virus between twins and the maternal and perinatal outcomes in HIV positive twin pregnancies.

Methods: An audit involving 186 sets of twin pregnancies delivered at two hospitals in KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa was conducted over a one year period. Relevant data included maternal age, parity, obstetric history, foetal presentation, gestational age at delivery, Apgar scores, birth weight and pregnancy complications.

Results: Of 9521 deliveries, 186 (1.95%) women were identified with a twin pregnancy; 80 (43%) of these mothers were HIV infected. One twin was HIV infected giving an incidence of 0.9%. The infected twin was the first-born twin (or twin 1) and was delivered by Caesarean delivery. Based on mode of delivery, there was no transmission for twin 1 or twin 2 via vaginal delivery, but a 1.4% transmission for twin 1 and 0% for twin 2 following Caesarean delivery.

Conclusion: Twin pregnancies are at low risk of MTCT of HIV provided the mother is on highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART) or has taken effective antiretroviral (ARV) treatment (dual therapy) in the antenatal period.

Loading full text...

Full text loading...


Article metrics loading...


This is a required field
Please enter a valid email address
Approval was a Success
Invalid data
An Error Occurred
Approval was partially successful, following selected items could not be processed due to error