Participant Information

BiRTHS is a great opportunity for the parents of twins to be involved in as if they are involved in the Registry they will receive twin newsletters twice a year and will be invited to yearly social events to meet other twin parents.  Moreover if they are involved in the Project they will have great piece of mind as they will be given in depth information about the mental and physical development of their twins, as their progress will  be closely followed by physicians, psychologists and researchers.  Further to this they will be informed as to whether their twins are truly identical or fraternal. 

Participant Information for the BiRTHS Project

We would like to invite new parents of twins to take part in a research study and registry of twins and their family members. We are currently recruiting expectant twin parents who have been referred to a special multiples clinic.

The aim of this study is to provide insights into the way differences between individuals are determined by hereditary and environmental influences. We would also like to investigate how life of parents of twins changes from a social point of view. In order to take this research forward we are asking parents expecting twins to join the Birmingham Registry for Twin and Heritability Studies (BIRTHS). With the help of registered twins and their families, the BIRTHS will examine the influence of genes and environment on the growth and development of children. We would be grateful if you would join the BIRTHS and fill in a questionnaire when you come to the hospital for your antenatal appointments and after delivery. We would like your permission to take cord blood from your twins to genetically determine whether your twins are identical or non-identical. We will feedback this information to you. We do not take blood from the twins themselves. Once registered, we will invite you and your twins to a special twin clinic for regular follow-up not only of growth and weight, but also to monitor your babies development in detail. After each visit you will receive detailed feedback on the developmental status of your children.  In addition, we will look through your and your twins’ medical records and will ask you to complete short and easy to fill in questionnaires.

Taking part is entirely voluntary. Before you decide whether you would like to join, it is important for you to understand why the research is being done and what it exactly will involve. Please take time to read the following detailed information carefully and discuss it with others if you wish. Please do not hesitate to contact me if there is anything not clear or if you would like more information. Please take time to decide whether or not you wish to take part.

BiRTHS Design Paper