11 surgeons separate conjoined twins in 9 hours

Apollo hospital Dubai, UAE, March 2nd, 2015: Jimmy Mtemi and Carolina Zakaria, hailing from Dar-es-Salaam, Tanzania, their daughters Abriana and Adriana, who are now 11-months old, were born conjoined. Their condition was called ‘thoraco omphalopagus’, where the chest and the abdomen are fused. It took a team of 11 surgeons from Apollo Hospitals to successfully separate the conjoint twins after a 9-hour long operation with minimal blood loss. The babies also shared a common heart line and diaphragm. More than 50 professional doctors including pediatricians, urologists and plastic surgeons planned for the operation.

Adriana and Abriana beat incredible odds to survive this rare procedure, which involved separation of the pericardium (heart lining), diaphragm and the connected livers. Conjoined births are rare, one in fifty thousand to one in 100,000. However, more than 35% die after birth.

Another important aspect of the surgery was the careful closure of the huge defect created by the separation. “After the separation, Adriana’s heart had to be covered with bovine pericardium and carefully closed with skin and soft tissue. The liver, which was abnormally large, could not be fully reduced in both babies. It took almost four hours and two teams to provide cover for the heart, liver and intestine,” added Dr. K.S. Sivakumar Plastic & Reconstructive Surgeon, Apollo Children’s Hospital, under whom the twins were admitted.

Speaking about the operation, the father of the twins, Mr Jimmy Mtemisaid, “We were really thrilled and excited to take back our two separate babies, back home. The operation was very successful and affordable, and we are really thankful to the doctors who performed this operation and all the staff in the hospital who were very supportive to us”.

The hospital is a major referral centre for minimally invasive surgeries and receives a large number of patients from all over the world looking for affordable, superior quality medical care along with less waiting time and minimum hospital stay.

Apollo has successfully treated over 60000 foreign patients from across the world in last five years and the numbers are looking up every year. NHS, UK alone has over a million patients waiting to be treated. Thousands of uninsured Americans now have the option to come to Apollo Hospitals for tertiary care needs. Similarly Africa, Middle East, CIS Countries in Central Asia and South East Asia present huge opportunities as the waiting time and expense are very high in other countries when compared to India.

Recently, Emirates, one of the world’s fastest growing airlines, had teamed up with Apollo Hospitals, to connect international patients with quality healthcare services in India. As part of the joint venture, the patients and their attendants from 19 countries across Middle East and Africa can visit the hospital’s flagship locations in Chennai, Hyderabad, New Delhi, Kolkata, Ahmadabad and Bangalore to avail specially formulated fares for round-trip flights on Emirates.

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