AIIMS achieves medical marvel: Successfully separates conjoined twins

Remarkable 12.5-hour surgery conducted by AIIMS, Delhi, resulted in the successful separation of twins joined at the chest and upper belly

| Updated: 26 July, 2023 7:41 pm IST
The pair of conjoined twins were joined at the level of the chest and upper part of the belly, facing each other

KOLKATA: All India Institute of Medical Science (AIIMS), New Delhi, achieved a remarkable feat as it successfully separated a pair of conjoined twins who were joined at the level of the chest and upper part of the belly, facing each other.

The challenging case was reported to AIIMS from Bareilly, Uttar Pradesh, involving twin sisters from a middle-class family in July 2022. The twins underwent a critical operation at the age of 11 months in June 2023.

The delicate surgery lasted for an impressive 12.5 hours and was carried out with the expertise of five senior doctors, six resident doctors, six anaesthetists, 12 nursing staff, and two OT technicians.

“Separation of conjoined twins is a complex surgery that requires multidisciplinary coordination and meticulous planning and execution by various departments,” AIIMS stated.

“The recently separated pair of twins were joined at the level of the chest and upper part of the belly and were facing each other. Major organs were shared between the twin sisters, including the liver, the heart’s covering layers, the ribcage, the diaphragm, and the abdominal wall,” AIIMS stated.

The surgery presented several challenges, especially regarding the separation of the liver and the region of the heart, but multiple teams of skilled surgeons collaborated seamlessly to ensure the operation’s success.

Following the procedure, the children were meticulously cared for in the critical care unit, with inputs from various departments and dedicated nursing care by the staff at AIIMS, enabling them to recuperate. The twins are now ready to be discharged from the hospital.

“Separation of the livers and the region of the heart was challenging, and multiple teams of surgeons took turns to complete the surgery precisely and efficiently,” AIIMS said.

“The children were managed in the critical care unit, and inputs from various departments and nursing care by our nursing staff have enabled them to recuperate, and now they are ready to be discharged from the hospital,” the premier hospital added.

Conjoined twins, or babies physically connected since birth, require specialised medical attention, and AIIMS Delhi’s Paediatric Surgery Department, under the leadership of Prof. Minu Bajpai, has displayed exceptional expertise in this field.

Over the past three years, AIIMS has operated on and successfully separated three pairs of conjoined twins, the first and second pairs being joined at the hip and sharing a common spinal cord and major vessels of the lower body and legs. These children are now leading healthy childhoods with no observed defects post-operation, AIIMS added.

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