After enduring a 14-hour-long surgery, a pair of 6-month-old conjoined twins were separated successfully this week at the Children’s Hospital of Richmond at Virginia Commonwealth University.
A'zhair and A'zhiah Jones' mother, Nachell Jones, learned her baby girls were joined together during the 13th week of her pregnancy, and she delivered them via C-section back in October.
But it wasn't until they made their entrance into the world that doctors learned how exactly they were conjoined. It turns out they shared a liver and a pericardium.
When the babies were just 2 weeks old, doctors were forced to go ahead and do the liver separation surgery due to illness. But since they were so sick (A'zhari was in renal failure and A'zhiah had severe cardiac hypertrophy), they were unable to completely separate them at that point in time.
On Monday, however, a team of 40 physicians, surgeons, nurses, and other medical personnel finally completed the separation, which you can actually see in this video clip. This footage is pretty amazing, considering it shows the surgery in progress.
Wow. I couldn't help but get a little bit choked up thinking how incredible that moment must have been for their parents when they realized their little girls became two tiny individuals.
And hearing their mom talk about how wonderful the hospital staff was to her and how they let her "cry on their shoulders" made me want to reach out and give her a huge hug.
OMG. Can you even imagine how difficult the past six months have been for her? It must have been absolutely heartbreaking to worry day in and day out whether or not her precious babies would ever grow up to lead normal lives.
But thankfully, according to surgeon-in-chief Dr. David Lanning, it sounds like A'zhair and A'zhiah will do just that. He said, "We're very optimistic that the twins will have a full and complete recovery. At this point we don't anticipate any future operations or need for any long term medications. I see the girls living full happy lives as individuals."
Aww. Hearing his words must have been music to their parents' ears. Don't you just love a story with a happy ending?
What moved you the most about hearing what these babies went through?
Image via VCU/YouTube