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Dear Patient Care Advocates: Will IUI or IVF Guarantee Twins?

Dear Patient Care Advocates:

My wife and I have been diagnosed with unexplained infertility and are trying to make the decision to do IUI or IVF. We really want to have twins. Which treatment is more likely to give us twins and help us save money on multiple fertility treatments?

Sam in Albany

Dear Sam,

As a former fertility patient and mother of twins through IVF, I can speak to both the benefits and risks of having multiples.

Trust me, I get it. Twins are adorable and fertility treatment adds up, so the “two-for-one special” is tempting! The truth is, fertility treatment cannot guarantee twins and fertility doctors will not perform a fertility treatment procedure just to increase a couple’s chance of having twins. Your doctor will advise you to choose the fertility treatment that will yield the highest success for your situation- be it IUI or IVF- and will discuss the chance of you conceiving multiples.

Carrying more than one baby poses risks to the mother and her babies. She is at increased risk of gestational diabetes, pre-eclampsia, pre-term labor, and prolonged hospital stays for herself and the children. In the long run, it is less expensive (physically and financially) to attempt pregnancy with fertility treatment two separate times than to have a high risk twin pregnancy with potential for Neonatal Intensive Care Unit stays and costly hospital bills.

Most recently, fertility research says the safest pregnancy is a singleton pregnancy. If your wife is under the age of 35 and has high-quality embryos, the best treatment option for her is a single embryo transfer (SET).

For more information about SET and the guidelines set forth by American Society for Reproductive Medicine (ASRM), check out these articles on

Educating Patients about Single Embryo Transfer in IVF
IVF and the Twin Trend: Educating Patients about the Risks
Program Provides Incentive for Single Embryo Transfers

Don't forget to visit Fertile Thoughts for information on multiples pregnancies, IVF, and single embryo transfers.

Best of luck to you both!

Watch as Dr. Gabriel Garzo of Reproductive Partners Medical Group explains: What are the Benefits of Single Embryo Transfer?

Click image to play.

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