MULTIPLE BIRTHS IN UKRAINE: DEMOGRAPHIC ASPECTS
Keywords:fertility, twins, triplets, multiple deliveries, demographic study
The phenomenon of multiple deliveries primarily attracts the attention of physicians, who are mostly focused on the study of its physiological aspects and consequences. However, it is important to know the demographic characteristics of this phenomenon to understand development trends and patterns. The study of the features of the twins biography creates a unique opportunity to determine the causes and eff ects of human behaviour, the possibility of adaptation, development, to identify the role of the genetic factors, environment, events in human life and more. The national registers of twins are maintained in many developed countries. Unfortunately, Ukraine does not have complete statistical information about the number of twins, the age of the mother at their birth, the order of their birth, the sex and age structure of twins, triplets and quadruplets living in our country, so in our country a systematic analysis of multiple births is not carried out. The aim of this paper is to investigate the demographic characteristics of the phenomenon of multiple births. The study was conducted using methods of comparison, analysis, generalization, graphical method and based on statistical information of demographic yearbooks of the Czech Republic and Poland, which published quite detailed information on the births of multiple deliveries by sex and age of mother, and data from the State Statistics Service of Ukraine on the number of births with twins, triplets and more twins in diff erent types of settlements. Such studies have not been conducted in our country for the last 50 years. In Ukraine, the frequency of multiple births and births of twins has increased in the new millennium; in 2019 there were 13.6 multiple deliveries per 1,000 deliveries, or 27.1 newborn twins per 1,000 births (in 2001 respectively 6.9 and 13.8). However, in diff erent countries the trends of the frequency of multiple births may diff er signifi cantly, in particular, in the last decade in Poland index of frequency has stabilized, but in the Czech Republic it has declined quite rapidly. The example of these countries has shown that increased fertility is not necessarily accompanied by increase in the frequency of multiple births, and the highest frequency is not always characteristic of women aged 35-39 years as early research has shown. In Ukraine, the share of multiple births among all live births with the use of reproductive technologies is declining. In order to study the phenomenon of multiple births, it would be advantageous in Ukraine to introduce in statistical observations the forms of distribution of multiple births by maternal age, order of birth, to identify cases of twin births using reproductive technologies.
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