Conjoined/dicephalic twins is a disorder in which at birth you’re physically attached to
your sibling and in some cases so might the rest of your organs. Most of the time its too
dangerous to even try to separate both individuals so they end up staying like that due to their
conjoined organs. There are five common types of dicephalic twins, thoracopagus,
omphalopagus, pygopagus, ischiopagus, and craniopagus. “There are many different ways in
which twins can be joined; some are joined at the head, others at the side or torso, and still others
along the spine or pelvis.” (Zimmer). This disorder can be diagnosed at early pregnancy through
a prenatal ultrasound.
At early pregnancy, the doctor has the right to ask the family if they would prefer to
terminate the pregnancy. Surgical separations can be an elective procedure or an emergency for
the lives of the twins not to be at risk. For these surgical procedures to be done, neurosurgeons,
plastic surgeons, anesthetics, radiologists, pediatrics, and ancillary staff need to take place.
Thoracopagus happens when the twins’ heads become attached during early pregnancy
and share an abdominal wall, sternum, and diaphragm. Cases like these can be very dangerous
because a lot of these babies share the same heart which can cause them to not survive. There has
been no known survivors with that kind of case. Thoracopagus can be diagnosed through
ultrasonography. Thoracopagus conjoined twins that share a heart have complex abnormal
cardiac anatomy
Omphalopagus is when the twins are joined at their abdominal walls, often facing one another and they share a liver together.


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