Surgeons share a celebratory selfie after successfully separating three-day-old conjoined twins in a pain-staking operation

December 12, 2018  10:32

This is the celebratory selfie a team of surgeons captured following a pain-staking operation to separate conjoined twins.

The baby girls - who were three days old at the time of the procedure - weighed just 7lbs between them and were joined at the stomach.

Doctors in India managed to convince the unnamed pair's parents that separation surgery was the best option, despite their fears.

A 'challenging' five-hour operation proved a success, and the two girls are expected to be allowed home later this week.

The surgeons in Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh - 186 miles (300km) south east of Lucknow - performed the procedure for free because the parents were not able to pay.

Dr Vaibhav Pandey, assistant professor of paediatric surgery at S S Hospital, said: 'It was one of the rarest operations our hospital does.

'I am very happy that both survived in spite of the long operation and the children being weak. It was a challenging task.'

The operation took place on December 6 and was performed by a team of five surgeons, ten doctors and 15 nurses.

They took a photo with the two girls still on the operating table to celebrate the operation, which was tricky due to their tiny blood supply.

The girls, who are said to be doing well, will be named during traditional rituals performed when they get home.

Medical literature states conjoined twins develop when a woman produces just one egg that doesn't fully separate after being fertilised.

The developing embryo then begins to split into identical twins during the first few weeks but stops before the process is complete.

Births of conjoined twins, whose skin and internal organs are fused together, are rare. They are believed to occur just once in every 200,000 live births.

Approximately 40 to 60 per cent of conjoined twins arrive stillborn, and about 35 per cent survive only one day.

The overall survival rate of conjoined twins is somewhere between five per cent and 25 per cent.

For some reason, female siblings seem to have a better shot at survival than their male counterparts.

Although more male twins conjoin in the womb than female twins, females are three times as likely as males to be born alive.

Source: The Daily Mail

Photos: India Photo Agency/

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