Doctors have successfully operated on a baby to remove the remains of his dead parasitic twin.
Anjaneya was born in India with an extra pair of lower limbs, a torso and genitalia, to Lalitamma and Chennabasava on January 21st.
The parents, both labourers, were aghast initially to find out their ‘miracle’ child – their second son – had been born this disabled yet still decided to raise him up as he was born.
But doctors and family begged them to allow the hospital to operate on the baby.
On February 2, a team of two dozen surgeons and neonatal specialists at Narayana Health City in Bengaluru in southern India conducted a four-hour-long surgery on the 12-day-old child and successfully removed the extra limbs.
They separated some intestine, muscles, soft tissues and blood vessels.
Dr Sanjay Rao, senior consultant paediatric surgeon, said: “It was a case of parasitic twins.
“This happens due to the embryo splitting improperly after fertilization which means the embryo splits but does not separate and one part doesn’t develop normally and sometimes, is attached to certain organs.
“The child had a minor heart condition that was treated and is still being monitored. He withstood the surgery well and we don’t anticipate any major problems,” he added.
The worried parents are now overjoyed to see their child now ‘normal’.
Father Chennabasava, 26, said: “When I first saw him I had no courage to tell his mother about him.
“So, me and my family kept his condition hidden from her. We didn’t want her to get upset in her fragile state. We kept him covered and let her feed him.
“It was only hours later that we showed her his picture on the phone. She could not believe her eyes and burst into tears. We were shattered.
“I was wondering why the God did this to us. We are poor and can’t even afford to travel back to our village. But thanks to doctors for giving my son a new life. The hospital has promised to make all arrangements and even take care of the follow-up treatment,” he said.
The poverty-stricken parents hailing from a small village had never gone to doctors or followed a regular check up including sonography during gestation period. They were expecting a healthy child just like their first born.
Lalitamma said: “It is God’s gift to us. We had never expected anything wrong could happen to our child. My first son, born three years ago, is healthy. My husband and I were willing to raise the child just the way he was.
“But doctors advised us to take him to take him to advanced hospital for surgery. I am thankful to the doctors here. They have given my son a new life. I am delighted that my son will lead a normal life now.”