We are a group of nurses, doctors, academics, and parents aiming to better understand the lived experience of families who suffer the loss of one or more babies from a multiple pregnancy, but where at least one baby survives. We use the term ‘baby loss’ to include all babies who die whether this is a result of miscarriage, stillbirth, neonatal or infant death. We understand that some of these pregnancies were triplet or high order pregnancy but use the term ‘twinless’ twin as shorthand.


The group is led by Professor Nicholas Embleton and Professor Judith Rankin, based in Newcastle upon Tyne, UK. Our work is published in medical journals and has been used to create resources available on this website. In collaboration with the Skye High Foundation we developed the Butterfly cot card.


We are an academic group aiming to improve outcomes for families and individuals affected by this unique form of baby loss. We do not provide clinical advice, and we are unable to provide support or counselling for affected families. Support can be accessed by contacting Footprints Baby Loss a charity run by bereaved parents, for bereaved parents.

Nicholas Embleton

Professor Nicholas Embleton

I am a Consultant Neonatal Pediatrician (qualified 1990), and lead a research programme that includes feeding & nutrition in newborn infants, and the Butterfly project with parents. You can read more about our research on our website. www.neonatalresearch.net

Judith Rankin

Professor Judith Rankin

I have a Personal Chair in maternal and perinatal epidemiology at Newcastle University, and help lead the qualitative research. Our studies first explored the experiences of parents following withdrawal of life-saving support from sick neonates, and then work on loss from a twin pregnancy that led to the Butterfly project.