Conjoined twin sisters from Bhutan successfully separated, but can’t stop snuggling

Jan 4, 2019

A pair of twin sisters were born conjoined at the lower chest in the Himalayan nation of Bhutan, yet they found hope in leading a normal life apart from one another thanks to a donor. They, along with their mother, were able to fly to Melbourne to be separated surgically with their funds taken care of.

The family arrived in the southern Australian city in October 2018, and the twins were admitted into the Royal Children’s Hospital.

Before the two sisters, Nima and Dawa, could undergo surgery though, doctors said, the twins needed to build up strength, as the girls had nutritional deficiencies.

The sisters were fused at the torso, but to complicate matters further, they also shared a liver, and doctors would need to see more closely just what was shared and what was separate.

After surviving a six-hour operation, though, they were not only in good health, but also in good spirits.

The Royal Children’s Hospital Melbourne clinicians have successfully separated twins Nima and Dawa in a six-hour…

Posted by The Royal Children's Hospital, Melbourne on Thursday, November 8, 2018

“They’re really cheeky, they’re not far from one another at any time at all and they’re still in the same bed,” nursing coordinator Kellie Smith said.

Yet it seemed that the sisters, then 16 months old, had grown used to each other after being conjoined for so long. When hospital staff tried putting them in separate beds, they become cranky.

“We try to have them a little bit apart, but they manage bum shuffle back together and have their legs intertwined, always,” Smith said.

So in the end, they had to be moved together again.

©Getty Images | WILLIAM WEST/AFP

While they were mending up well, it was expected that they would remain in the hospital a while longer before being discharged in late November 2018.

“The areas we tampered with during the surgery are healing well and the girls are getting back to a more normal life,” surgeon Joe Crameri said. “The area that we repaired on their tummy wall seems to be dealing with the strain quite well.”

But most importantly, the girls, whose names mean “Sun” and “Moon,” are happy. They love nothing more than snuggling up with one another and lovingly pulling on each other’s hair, staff say.

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