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Old 03-27-2009, 09:05 AM   #1
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twins - identical vs fraternal questions....

I have done a fair amt of reading and thought I understood...but the doc and tech told me 2 diff things.

This is what I thought was right....

dizygotic = 2 eggs = fraternal
monozygotic=1 egg split=identical

diamniotic/dichorionic=2 sacs, 2 placentas - usually fraternal, but identical in rare cases when egg splits very early.

diamniotic/monochorinic=2 sacs one placenta=identical

mononamnioic/monochorionic=one sac one placenta =identical

In the lab report for my first ultrasound at 8 weeks, they said they were di/di, so my doc said fraternal.

IN the one yesterday, I asked the us doc if he could tell before delivery without revealing gender, and he said no, and that he couldn't tell if they were id or fraternal.

am I missing something? Do they examine the placentas at birth, or do dna tests? Is it only possible to tell for sure if they share a sac or if genders are opposite?
TIA/

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Old 03-27-2009, 09:47 AM   #2
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Re: twins - identical vs fraternal questions....

I was told that we could only tell by doing a DNA test. Our genetic counselor told us that about 30% of same sex di/di twins are identical. Honestly, it's just not that important to me and I'm not forking out $300 for a DNA test. And you'll find that most medpros don't know much about twinning. I can't tell you how many docs/nurses assumed that my boys are fraternal based only on the fact that there were 2 placentas.
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Old 03-27-2009, 02:16 PM   #3
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Re: twins - identical vs fraternal questions....

And the DNA tests can also come back inconclusive, so that's not even a sure way of finding out. Our guys were di/mo so we assumed identicals (and the fact that we did IVF and only had one embie to transfer), but they sure don't look identical. Congrats and good luck!
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Old 03-27-2009, 06:36 PM   #4
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Re: twins - identical vs fraternal questions....

Yes, they can be di/di and still be id twins. If the egg splits early enough, even id twins will be completely separate in terms of placenta and all. And, on top of that, even if you have same gender twins and it appears they only have one placenta, it can still be frats. The 2 placentas can fuse and appear to be one. If they are for sure in the same sac, then they are definitely ID. But, it's very hard to tell for sure. I know several twin moms that were told they were in the same sac when in fact they were not. One of which had triplets and was told 2 of them were ID because they were in the same sac. Well, not only were they not in the same sac, but they are in fact frats. (It's totally obvious. There is no way they are ID. No DNA test needed.) So, until they are born, you can't know. After birth, they can see for sure it they were in the same sac and they can have the 1 placenta analyzed to see it was in fact only 1 or 2 fused. So, if they are found to be in the same sac or only one placenta then no DNA is needed. They are definitely ID. But, on the other hand, if it's proven there was 2 of everything and they are same gender and they look alike, you still won't know unless you get DNA. I personally would definitely do it. It would drive me crazy not to know. That's just me though. I don't have to worry about it as mine are B/G. I hope that all made sense. Good luck with the mystery.
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Old 03-28-2009, 10:51 AM   #5
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Re: twins - identical vs fraternal questions....

Quote:
Originally Posted by HeatherlovesCDs View Post
Yes, they can be di/di and still be id twins. If the egg splits early enough, even id twins will be completely separate in terms of placenta and all. And, on top of that, even if you have same gender twins and it appears they only have one placenta, it can still be frats. The 2 placentas can fuse and appear to be one. If they are for sure in the same sac, then they are definitely ID. But, it's very hard to tell for sure. I know several twin moms that were told they were in the same sac when in fact they were not. One of which had triplets and was told 2 of them were ID because they were in the same sac. Well, not only were they not in the same sac, but they are in fact frats. (It's totally obvious. There is no way they are ID. No DNA test needed.) So, until they are born, you can't know. After birth, they can see for sure it they were in the same sac and they can have the 1 placenta analyzed to see it was in fact only 1 or 2 fused. So, if they are found to be in the same sac or only one placenta then no DNA is needed. They are definitely ID. But, on the other hand, if it's proven there was 2 of everything and they are same gender and they look alike, you still won't know unless you get DNA. I personally would definitely do it. It would drive me crazy not to know. That's just me though. I don't have to worry about it as mine are B/G. I hope that all made sense. Good luck with the mystery.
totally agree with heather. mine are both b/g and there were definitely two sacs and two placentas- although with the first set, they did fuse together, you could still clearly see the line between them. everyone i know with same sex twins has had them tested and i would say that 90% are ID. for me, it would be good to know b/c fraternal twins are genetic and identical twins are not. and there's all that cool ID twin stuff- more shared personality/physical traits/sensitivities, etc...
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Old 03-28-2009, 10:59 AM   #6
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Re: twins - identical vs fraternal questions....

oh how exciting! twins are super fun! dont know about all that identical stuff but know i have a friend who was told her boys werent id and wow did they ever look like they were for about the first 5 years of their life. even now i still have a little trouble telling them apart but they have changed a bit so as not to be really truly id! hope you figure it out if it matters. best of luck on the rest of your pregnancy and delivery!
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Old 03-28-2009, 11:10 AM   #7
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Re: twins - identical vs fraternal questions....

I agree with the PPs. And, it might be obvious once babies are born what you have. I have fraternal boys, and they looked a lot different (to me) right from birth.
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Old 03-28-2009, 01:23 PM   #8
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Re: twins - identical vs fraternal questions....

We were told the boys were mono/mono,, then at our last peri appt,, they found a very thin line that they thought then could be two sacs, but only one placenta was seen,, fast forward,, C-section, 2 placentas, 2 sacs. And when the boys were born, they look like siblings and our older kids but for sure not identical,, we were curious and our insurance covered it, so DNA determined they were fraternal not identical!
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Old 03-28-2009, 04:20 PM   #9
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Re: twins - identical vs fraternal questions....

Like the other mamas said, a DNA test is the only way to tell, unless they can see that they share a sac on the u/s. But even that's not exact, as in the case of the pp! Placentas do fuse, so that doesn't tell. You'll just have to wait and see, and decide if you want the test.

The good news is, they have their own rooms. People love the novelty of id twins, but really, it's best if they have their own room and own food.
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Old 03-28-2009, 06:11 PM   #10
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Re: twins - identical vs fraternal questions....

one of our sets of twins is dizygotic/diamniotic but is identical twins....it is rare but does happen. they only way we know this is true is that we only transferred 3 embryos and have 4 babies, but every U/S the tech and the doctor agree that they all have their own sacs & placentas.

after birth the pathologist examines the placenta to see if they can tell what the babies are....gender & blood type can help in identifying but dna is the definitive:-)
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