By Joymala Bagchi/Priyanka Sharma
New Delhi [India], May 24 (ANI): Almost after one year and 10 months of their admission at All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) the doctors at All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) have finally succeeded in separating co-joined twins, who were attached from their back and hip.
Conjoined twin girls were successfully separated in 24 hours long surgery that began at 8.30 a.m on Friday and continued past 9 a.m. on Saturday, May 23. A team of 64 healthcare workers participated in this over 24-hour long surgery and successfully separated the twins.
The co-joined twin girls were brought to the medical institute when they were just 62 days old with fused lower parts of their bodies. Since, then the co-joined twins were under the close supervision of doctors headed by Dr Minu Bajpai, professor, department of paediatrics surgery.
The babies were joined at the hips with a complex fusion of their spinal bones and spinal cords, intestines. There were abnormalities of the heart and major blood vessels along with a lack of adequate skin cover.
"Prof. Randeep Guleria, AIIMS Director, took note of the need and promptly granted permission for the surgery to be undertaken even during the COVID-19 pandemic," according to sources.
The family of the twins hail from Uttar Pradesh, Badaun and their parents were counselled at various stages and major procedures in separating the co-joined twins, said a doctor.
"Today, the co-joined twin girls are of 2years of age. When their parents brought them to AIIMS, they were hardly two months old. At that stage, we did not want to separate them as we wanted their bodies to grow enough to bear huge challenges during the separation surgery," said a doctor.
"We were studying their cases, did their vital investigations and took multiple meetings to chalk out the plan for separation surgery.
The surgery was successfully conducted by the Department of Paediatric Surgery along with assistance from Anaesthesiology, Plastic Surgery, and C.T.V.S.
Department of Radiodiagnosis, Neurophysiology, Nuclear Medicine, Biochemistry, Nursing and Paramedical staff including C.M.E.T. also worked as a team for this 24 hours long operation.
Doctors told ANI, "The process of anaesthesia was very challenging as both the girls have a hole in their hearts. Also, their fused spinal cord was creating a problem for bladder and movement of their body. We had to fix it up with the help of neuro-monitoring."
The process involved a team of 64 medical professionals including doctors, nurses, paramedics to conduct the 24-hour marathon surgery. "The reconstruction was lower parts of the bodies was another challenge as it involved reproductive organs," they said adding that the twins would be able to become mothers in their adulthood.
Another doctor said "Since there was only one passage to pass the stool, we have to create another passage for other child. We have to keep the separated twins in close observation for at least 48 hours. As of now, they are stable and their vital functions are doing well."
Experts say that it is a once in a lifetime surgery for any pedantic surgeon. Once the separation procedure starts, doctors have to keep the babies away from external exposure to avoid infections.
Medically, conjoined twins fused from back and lower half of the bodies are very rare. Such kind of twins have four arms; one, two, three and four legs, and typically one external set of genitalia and anus. (ANI)