Kristina Kline had just begun her second trimester with twins. As with any twin pregnancy, Kristina was regularly visiting a high risk OBGYN to monitor baby growth and watch for complications. It’s a precaution that likely saved her baby boy’s lives.
Kristina’s twin sons were found to have Twin To Twin Transfusion Syndrome. It’s an abnormality when identical twins have umbilical connections on both sides of the placenta, causing one baby to transfuse blood to the other baby. The “donor” baby runs the risk of low blood volume and decreased nutrients. It puts a strain on the tiny baby’s heart that in some cases can be fatal.
“This can kill both babies,” says Dr. Michael A. Belfort, MD, PhD, Texas Children’s Obstetrician/Gynecologist-in-Chief.
A New Orleans resident, Kristina and her husband traveled all the way to Houston in hopes of saving their precious children. They arrived at Texas Children’s Pavilion for Women, and at 17 Weeks, the procedure was done.
Dr. Belfort and his team performed a laser ablation. They placed a scope into the amniotic fluid so they could see and identify the delicate connections on the surface of the placenta.
So it was advised that Kline should come to the Texas Children’s Pavilion for Women for the procedure.
“The placenta is separated into its two territories,” Dr. Belfort explained, “so each baby has its own territory and they’re no longer sharing connections on the surface of the placenta.”
Thankfully, the procedure was a success, although doctors monitored her and her babies closely for the remainder of their pregnancy.
As with many twins, Kristina’s were born early.
“They’ve made great progress with feeding and interacting and breathing on their own,” the mother said. “There’s still things they’re trying to figure out in the NICU.”
Because of the incredible skill of doctors, and the elite facilities of Texas Children’s, both Kristina’s babies were born healthy, and both of them will be traveling home to Louisiana soon. Their parents are eternally grateful to Texas Children’s.