1-year-old twins conjoined at head separated in rare surgery
ISRAEL (Gray News) - A pair of 1-year-old twins, who were born conjoined at the back of the head, can look each other in the eyes for the first time after a rare separation surgery.
The sisters underwent the complicated, 12-hour surgery Thursday at Soroka Medical Center in Beersheba, Israel. The operation went well, doctors say, and the twins are expected to make a full recovery, according to The New York Times.
“It was a moment of weeping and laughter with the family,” said Dr. Mickey Gideon, director of pediatric neurosurgery at the hospital. “For the first time, the family can hold the babies separately.”
The twins, whose names were not released, were born conjoined at the backs of their heads last August.
A medical team of 50 prepared for their separation surgery for months, the Times reports. The preparations involved skin and tissue expanders, 3D models and virtual reality technology.
The rare operation has only been performed about 20 times worldwide, Gideon says.
Conjoined twins occur once in every 50,000 to 60,000 births, according to the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. Cases where twins are born joined at the head, or craniopagus twins, are the least common, occurring only 2% of the time.
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