Medicine: Saving One, Dooming Another

Doctors successfully abort an abnormal twin

It was a case that would have tried the wisdom of Solomon. For 18 months, a couple had been trying without success to conceive a child. Then the wife became pregnant with fraternal twins. Because the woman, who had never before given birth, was 40 years old, she underwent amniocentesis in the 17th week of pregnancy. Guided by ultrasound scans, doctors inserted a needle through the woman's abdomen and into the separate amniotic sacs, withdrawing a sample of the fluid that cushioned each of the developing children. The fluid contained cells shed by the fetuses, and...

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