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4 dead as severe storms hit Houston, TX; Election Protection Program eases access to voting information; surge in solar installations eases energy costs for Missourians; IN makes a splash for Safe Boating Week.

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The Supreme Court rules funding for the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau is okay, election deniers hold key voting oversight positions in swing states, and North Carolina lawmakers vote to ban people from wearing masks in public.

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Americans are buying up rubber ducks ahead of Memorial Day, Nebraskans who want residential solar have a new lifeline, seven community colleges are working to provide students with a better experience, and Mississippi's "Big Muddy" gets restoration help.

Triple Success: Life-Saving Surgery Protects Twins, Mom

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Monday, October 20, 2014   

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – When a family is expecting twins, the joy is multiplied, but so are the potential complications.

That's why one Missouri hospital is now leading the way with a potentially life-saving procedure performed before the babies are born.

Twin-to-twin transfusion syndrome is a complication that arises when both babies share one placenta, causing blood supply to be uneven and a 90 percent chance both babies will die if the problem reaches an advanced stage.

Dr. Corey Iqbal, section chief of fetal surgery at Children's Mercy Hospital in Kansas City, recently performed the hospital's first minimally invasive laser treatment for this condition.

"The laser treatment, if you offer it to twin-to-twin transfusion stage 2 or greater, is associated with an 85 percent chance that you save one twin, and a 65 percent chance that you save both twins," he explains.

Children's Mercy is one of only a handful of hospitals nationwide to offer this procedure, and expects to perform more than a dozen each year.

Iqbal says it's important to remember that when operating on twins in utero, there are actually three patients, with the mother assuming much of the risk.

"It's great that not only the technology exists to be able to save these pregnancies and give these twins a shot at life, but also that we can do it here locally and families don't have to travel," he says.

As the rate of multiple births has been on the rise for several years, doctors estimate that there are now roughly 4,500 hundred cases of twin-to-twin transfusion syndrome each year in the United States.





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