Bangladesh per­forms 1st con­joined twin surgery

Twins to re­main in in­ten­sive care af­ter surgery

Kuwait Times - - HEALTH & SCIENCE -

Sur­geons in Bangladesh have per­formed what they are call­ing the coun­try's first suc­cess­ful sep­a­ra­tion of con­joined twins in a "ground­break­ing" and com­plex oper­a­tion. Tofa and Tahura, ten-month-old sis­ters who were born con­joined at the spine and rec­tum, were sep­a­rated by a team of two dozen doc­tors Tues­day at Bangladesh's largest hos­pi­tal in the cap­i­tal Dhaka. Pae­di­atric sur­geon Ab­dul Hanif said the twins were in a sta­ble con­di­tion af­ter the del­i­cate nine­hour pro­ce­dure.

"It is the first time we have suc­cess­fully sep­a­rated con­joined twins in Bangladesh," Hanif, from Dhaka Med­i­cal Col­lege Hos­pi­tal, said. "It's a ground­break­ing oper­a­tion in our med­i­cal his­tory. It was an ex­tremely com­plex oper­a­tion." The twins will un­dergo at least two fur­ther op­er­a­tions to re­struc­ture their in­ter­nal or­gans, Hanif added. The surgery had been "100 per­cent suc­cess­ful" but the twins would re­main in in­ten­sive care for some time to en­sure no in­fec­tions de­vel­oped, said an­other doc­tor, Shah­noor Is­lam.

Born to a poor cou­ple, the twin sis­ters-who do not use a sur­namewere brought to Dhaka a month ago. Their mother, Shahida Begum, wept fol­low­ing the surgery, de­scrib­ing her ten­sion and joy at news the oper­a­tion had been a suc­cess. "Doc­tors said the surgery was suc­cess­ful, but they are not out of risk yet. I pray to God for my kids' quick­est re­cov­ery. Let their pain be gone." An­other pair of Bangladeshi twins con­joined at the skull are await­ing a com­plex med­i­cal pro­ce­dure in Dhaka. The surgery is un­prece­dented in Bangladesh, and doc­tors are con­sult­ing med­i­cal opin­ions from across the globe as they pre­pare for the oper­a­tion.

Doc­tors are try­ing to es­tab­lish whether the one-year-old girls-born other­wise healthy in north­west Bangladesh-share the same brain, some­thing that would vastly com­pli­cate the surgery. In rare cases, iden­ti­cal twins can be born with skin and in­ter­nal or­gans fused to­gether. About half are still­born, and the sur­vival rate is between five and 25 per cent. In 2008 a baby was born in Bangladesh with two heads but died af­ter just two days.


DHAKA: Pre­vi­ously-con­joined Bangladeshi twins Tofa and Tahura are treated af­ter surgery to separate them at Dhaka Med­i­cal Col­lege Hos­pi­tal in Dhaka.

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