Tuesday 15 September 2009

New Article: Headless conjoined twin born

The following news article is directly quoted from 14th Sep 09, Straits Times (for educational purpose).

An Afghan woman has given birth to a baby boy attached at the chest to a headless conjoined twin. --PHOTO: AFP
Headless conjoined twin born

KUNDUZ (Afghanistan) - AN AFGHAN woman has given birth to a baby boy attached at the chest to a headless conjoined twin, a doctor at a hospital in northern Afghanistan said on Monday.

The otherwise healthy infant (baby) was born on Thursday with the torso (body/trunk), legs and hands of a male twin attached, he said.

'For the first few days the attached second body was also alive and was moving, but now it is dead,' Dr Homayoun Khamoosh of Kunduz hospital told AFP. 'It is the first time we have seen a case like this in Kunduz province.'

Dr Khamoosh said an operation to separate the babies was needed to save the life of the fully formed child.

'Doctors have decided to carry out surgery to separate the two bodies before it (the headless body) decomposes (breaks down),' said Dr Khamoosh.

The 35-year-old mother, who has four other children, hid her face from cameras at the baby's bedside and would not give her name.

Afghanistan suffers from one of the world's highest rates of mother and child mortality during labour, mainly because of poor maternal healthcare in a destitute country devastated by decades of civil war. -- AFP


Apart from the movie "Stuck On You" by Matt Damon and Greg Kinnear, I haven't really seen any other movies which talk about conjoined twins, nor do I know of any others.

There is another term for conjoined twins, commonly used in the movie, called "Siamese Twins", originated from the most famous circus pair of Chang and Eng Bunker in Siam (now Thailand). Of Medical term, this is a form of "Omphalopagus", sharing their liver.

After watching an episode of House on TV one time "Cane and Able", I discovered that there is more to just twins connected through the body. The episode talked about a boy who kept seeing aliens and imagining he was always being captured by them. This boy is so special that he carries two types of DNA strands in his blood. Dr House later figured out that the boy was a chimera, an example of Chimerism (a form of Genetic Mosaicism), of which he actually had a twin brother growing inside his brain in the form of a tissue and was controlling the imagination of aliens. After removing this tissue (his brother), the boy was back to normal.

In an episode of South Park, the school nurse Gollum happened to be suffering from a ficitional diseases Conjoined Twins Myslexia (You can watch this episode by clicking on the link), I suppose this is a form of "Craniopagus".


Conjoined Twins Type: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Siamese_twins , http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Conjoined_twins#Types_of_conjoined_twins

House Episode Guide: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cane_and_Able_(House_episode)

South Park Episode: http://www.southparkstudios.com/guide/205

Medical Terms: http://house.wikia.com/wiki/Genetic_mosaicism

Medical Terms: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chimera_(genetics)