Boston doctors use rare procedure to deliver twins 24 days apart

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POSTED: Thursday, June 12, 2014 - 11:00am

UPDATED: Thursday, June 12, 2014 - 11:05am

When Lindalva DaSilva's unborn twins were in danger, doctors performed a rare and risky procedure - delivering one twin while giving the other more time to keep growing.

Lindalva DaSilva, 35, had always wanted to be a mother, so she was thrilled when an ultrasound revealed she was pregnant with twins.

But when she went into labor on Feb. 27 - nearly four months before her due date - DaSilva was frightened.

At Tufts Medical Center, doctors injected her with magnesium sulfate in an attempt to calm her contractions - babies born at 24 weeks often don't survive.

But after four days, it was clear they could not hold off the birth any longer.

Before bringing DaSilva to the delivery room, Dr. Sabrina Craigo mentioned a rarely used strategy that might improve the odds for one of the babies.

If conditions were right, they could deliver one twin, and then try to keep the second twin inside his mother - hopefully for days or even weeks.

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