Cairo: A team of surgeons had successfully separated Iraqi conjoined twins in an 11-hour operation at a hospital in the Saudi capital Riyadh, the kingdom’s official news agency SPA has reported.
The twins, named Omar and Ali, had been joined in the lower chest and abdomen, and shared the liver, bile ducts and intestines.
The operation was carried out on Thursday in six phases involving 27 specialists, nurses and technical staff at the King Abdullah Specialised Children’s Hospital in Riyadh.
The operation was the 54th carried out within a Saudi programme for separating conjoined twins, said Dr. Abdullah Al Rabeeah, who led the surgical team.
The separation procedure had been planned since the twins’ arrival in Saudi Arabia last September. Their age was not revealed.
SPA said the operation was carried out at directives of Saudi King Salman bin Abdul Aziz and Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman.
“There were delicate phases [in the operation] including the phase of separating the liver, particularly the bile ducts due to their small size,”Dr Al Rabeeah said
Dr Al Rabeeah, is also an advisor at the Royal Court and Supervisor General of King Salman Humanitarian Aid and Relief Centre. (KSrelief). “Over 32 years, the Saudi Programme has taken care of 127 conjoined twins from 23 sisterly and friendly countries,” he was quoted by SPA as saying.
Parents of Omar and Ali expressed appreciation and gratitude to King Salman and the crown prince as well as to the medical and surgical team engaged in the operation.
Saudi media carried footage of the mother and father overwhelmed by jubilation upon seeing their children separated for the first time.