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INTRODUCTION: Twin reversed arterial perfusion (TRAP) sequence is a rare complication of multiple pregnancy caused by defects in early embryogenesis. The pump twin supplies the acardiac recipient twin with blood, and although the pump twin is usually structurally normal, congenital anomalies have sometimes been reported. We report a unique case of twin reversed arterial perfusion sequence with a prenatal diagnosis of VACTERL association in the surviving pump twin. CASE PRESENTATION: A 24-year-old Caucasian woman presented at 11 weeks' gestation with a monochorionic, monoamniotic twin pregnancy. A reversed arterial flow was noted on a Doppler imaging study coming from the larger, apparently normal twin to the smaller, grossly abnormal twin, and a diagnosis of twin reversed arterial perfusion sequence was made. Cardiac activity was undetectable in the recipient twin by 16 weeks' gestation. Further detailed assessment at 18 weeks' gestation revealed multiple congenital anomalies of the surviving pump twin, in keeping with a diagnosis of VACTERL association. A live infant girl was delivered at 39 weeks by elective cesarean section. She underwent extensive surgery with subsequent normal development at the age of two years. CONCLUSION: The co-existence of two rare and complex conditions in this unique case raises interesting questions about the role of early defects in embryogenesis and their subsequent effects on fetal development. This case also highlights the importance of prenatal diagnosis of major congenital anomalies to the plan treatment, reduce morbidity and aid the survival of affected children.

Original publication

DOI

10.1186/1752-1947-4-411

Type

Journal article

Journal

J Med Case Rep

Publication Date

22/12/2010

Volume

4