Parasitic Twin Surgery: 10 Month Old Pregnant Child Life Shocks

Parasitic Twin Surgery
Parasitic Twin Surgery

Puliampatti's 10-month-old girl child has undergone successful surgery to remove a parasitic twin from her abdomen. This incident happened years ago and it came to limelight after the doctor opened up about the surgery in the event held by Ma Subramani, health care minister.

105 Doctors receive award from Ma Subramanian:

Health Minister Ma Subramanian marked International Doctors Day by presenting the prestigious ‘Best Doctor’ award to 105 exemplary physicians. These awards were presented in recognition of their outstanding contributions to healthcare between 2019 and 2024. 

The ceremony took place at the Tamil Nadu Dr. M G R Medical University in Guindy, where the minister personally honored each recipient for their dedication, expertise, and compassionate service in the field of medicine. 

Among them, one of the doctors opened up about the free surgery he had done for a rare case which got the attention. The rare condition was faced by a 10-month-old child who carried a parasitic twin in her fetus.

The Family Of The Child:

The child's parents, who were poor, did not receive proper medical check-ups during the pregnancy. The child was born at home via a normal delivery with a swollen abdomen.

After the birth, the parents sought medical opinions at several hospitals, where the initial diagnosis suggested a cancerous tumor. This worried the parents, and they consulted this specific doctor who, after conducting a CT scan and examining X-ray photos, discovered a parasitic twin in the child's fetus.

Fetus In Fetu:

The condition described here, known as 'fetus in fetu,' is indeed extremely rare and involves the development of one or more partially formed fetuses inside the body of another fetus. In this particular case, the child had a parasitic twin growing attached to her abdomen.

Due to the complexity of the condition, a team of skilled doctors undertook a challenging surgical procedure that lasted for over three hours. The primary difficulty lay in separating the parasitic twin from the child, given the intricate nature of their connection.

Despite the challenges, the surgical team successfully completed the operation, bringing significant relief to the child's family. Today, the child is around 10 years old and is healthy, marking a triumph of the operation.

What is a Parasitic Twin?

A parasitic twin is an exceptionally rare condition that occurs during early pregnancy when one twin embryo fails to fully develop. Instead of developing independently, parts of this embryo remain attached to the fully developed twin. 

These underdeveloped parts can include limbs, organs, or other tissues that are non-functional and rely on the healthier twin for blood supply and nutrients.

The condition can manifest as what's known as "fetus in fetu," where one or more partially formed fetuses develop inside the body of another fetus. Although often asymptomatic, this condition can cause discomfort if the fetal mass presses against the host twin's internal organs and may lead to nutritional issues as the underdeveloped twin draws on the host's resources.

Mark Umstad at the Royal Women’s Hospital in Melbourne, Australia said, “However, since fetus in fetu only occurs in about 1 in 500,000 births currently, we might be talking about one extra case a year globally.”