Siamese twins: why they occur

Siamese twins: why they occur


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The Twins xipophages – or Siamese – are twins that are born close to each other due to a genetic mutation. This condition is rare and occurs in one in every 100 thousand births.

  • How Siamese twins occur

  • Most common cases of Siamese twins

  • Diagnosis of Siamese twins

  • Siamese twins Chang and Eng

  • Siamese twins die together

How Siamese twins occur

The Siamese twins are originally from double fertilization of an egg, as well as other changes, which prevent the formation of two separate bodies.

Most common cases of Siamese twins

Siamese twins can be joined by the trunk or headhowever, in most cases, each has its organs functioning properly. In this case, surgery to separate them is the best solution. If they share organs such as the liver, heart or lung, surgery to separate them is not allowed, as one of the two will die.

Diagnosis of Siamese twins

The Siamese twins are the result of a genetic alteration that occurs in early pregnancy and this mutation can be identified in the first ultrasound.

Siamese twins Chang and Eng

The term Siamese twins came about because of brothers Chang and Eng. The twins were born in 1811 in a region where Thailand is now located and which at the time was named Zion. United only by a small portion of the trunk, the two shared the liver and were discovered by an American businessman who took them to the country where they were presented in circuses.

Siamese twins die together

Siamese twins who have not undergone separation surgery die within a maximum of hours. Time is reduced according to shared bodies by the brothers. When they share the heart, death occurs at about the same time.

Photo: © Patryk Kosmider – Shutterstock.com

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