Secular trend and associated factors of twinning in Taiwan.
Delivery records of public hospitals and local health centers were analyzed to investigate the secular trend of multiple births from 1955 to 1990 in Taiwan. Twinning rates decreased gradually from the late 1950s to 1973, slightly increased and remained stable from 1974 to 1980, and then increased strikingly from 1981 to 1990. During the study period, MZ rates were consistently higher than DZ rates except in 1986 when a higher DZ rate was observed. The highest MZ rate of 7.7 per 1,000 deliveries was observed in 1985, while the highest DZ rate of 4.6 per 1,000 deliveries was observed in 1986. The triplet incidence rate also declined from the early 1960s to 1973 and then increased markedly from 1974 to 1990. A case-control study including 482 MZ and 252 DZ twin pairs and 1,496 singletons was carried out in four teaching hospitals in Taipei City between October 1985 and June 1989 to examine factors related to twinning. The zygosity of twin pairs was determined by sex, placentation and red blood cell antigens. Multiple logistic regression analysis showed that the higher the maternal age, the lower the MZ and DZ rates, while the higher the parity, the higher the rates. There was no association of paternal age or of maternal educational level with twinning rates.
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