A baby girl who was born with two heads is expected to live after surgery, that removed on of the heads from a parasitic twin that “fed”off her blood supply and organs.
The baby born with two heads who remains unnamed was born via C-section at Ram Snehi Hospital in northern India.
The doctors were expecting to deliver two babies (normal twins) when her mother had a scheduled C-section, but doctors were shocked to find only one baby and an extra head with eyes, ears, a nose and lips protruding from her stomach; with a malformed hand hanging over the newborn’s chest.
She was immediately referred for surgery at JK Lone Hospital in Jaipur, 336 miles away; where a team of surgeons operated on the girl for four-hours, successfully removing the head.
“This is one of the rarest cases of parasitic twin. It was a complicated case as the twins shared blood vessels,” said Dr. Pravin Mathur, head of pediatric surgery at JK Lone Hospital.
“They were joined from the thorax and shared common vessels for blood supply from heart and liver.”
The child’s young parents were told they were expecting twins during a routine ultrasound.
Parasitic twins are similar to a conjoined twin, except a parasitic twin is not fully formed and was never a viable fetus.
A parasitic twin can occur when twin embryos begin developing in the womb but never split properly.
“The parents told us the mother had undergone sonograms and other tests but were not told about carrying an underdeveloped twin,” Dr. Mathur said.
“They were shattered when they saw the baby. We had to convince them to give us a nod for the surgery to save their daughter’s life. The baby had chances of catching septicemia.”
“We immediately conducted CT Scans, blood tests and X-rays and operated on the child.”
Her parents who work on a farm were reportedly was not charged for the surgery, their baby is recovering well.