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Surgically separated twins now breathe on their own

Shanghai Children's Medical Center doctors have removed respiration machines from the four-month-old twin sisters An An and Xin Xin who received a surgery on September 5 to separate their conjoined chest, hospital officials said today.

If the two babies can breathe by themselves normally in the following two days, it means they are out of critical condition, the doctors said.

The twins from Zhejiang Province are still kept in the intensive care unit. Their 39-year-old mother was found to carry Siamese twins in a prenatal check after 18 weeks of pregnancy. Since she had two miscarriages before, she decided to keep the fetus because the doctors said the twins were only conjoined at chest.

"They are recovering very well and are expected to leave the hospital in about one month," said Dr Liu Jinfen, president of Shanghai Children's Medical Center.

Special measures have been used to treat the pair after the surgery. "We used a special tube to pump formula into their stomachs the day after their surgery to ensure their nutrition and quicker recovery," said Dr Xu Zhuoming from the intensive care unit.
The hospital is cooperating with Project HOPE and Hospira Foundation, both international charity organizations, on a three-year project to provide pain relief solutions for children suffering from cancer and blood diseases.


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