Ethics is an essential component for the responsible clinical management of multiple gestation and decision-making about such pregnancies with pregnant women. The ethical concept of the fetus as a patient is presented as the basis for identifying a professionally responsible approach to selective termination, twin-to-twin transfusion syndrome, and to discordant beneficence-based obligations that exist when one or more fetuses are adversely affected by a fetal anomaly or complication of pregnancy. The roles for directive counseling, i.e., making evidence-based recommendations, and for non-directive counseling, i.e., offering evidence-based alternatives but making no recommendations, are described. The professional responsibility model of perinatal ethics creates a practical framework to guide the clinical judgment of perinatologists and the informed process about the clinical management of multiple pregnancies.
©2012 by Walter de Gruyter Berlin Boston