The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Another surgery on twins

Singapore, July 21 (Reuters): Two weeks after a failed attempt to separate Iranian twins, four-month-old conjoined South Korean sisters will undergo surgery to separate them at the same Singapore hospital, state television said today.

The operation to separate the babies joined at the lower spine could start as early as tomorrow if tests go well, Channel News Asia reported.

A team of 10 surgeons had been assembled for the surgery which was expected to last around 10 hours, it said.

Raffles Hospital spokeswoman Liang Hwee Ting said earlier today that results of tests carried out on the babies over the weekend were still pending.

The parents of the Korean twins had sought the advice of experts at Raffles Hospital before it began an operation to separate Laleh and Ladan Bijani, Iranian twins joined at the head, which ended tragically on July 8.

The 29-year-old law graduates lost a lot of blood as the operation to separate them was coming to an end.

Their deaths sparked a heated debate on the ethics of such a life-threatening operation, with some medical experts concerned about what they saw as the haste and motive behind the surgery.

But the parents of the Korean twins are determined to go ahead with the surgery.

Min Seung-joon, father of the twins, said the Singaporean medical team had given the twins a better than 85 percent chance of survival.

The twins, their parents and grandparents, had travelled to Singapore in mid-June for tests.

The parents had sought the help of Dr Keith Goh after hearing of his success in disentangling the fused skulls and brains of 11-month-old Nepali sisters in 2001.

”The situation with the Korean twins is definitely less complicated,” a medical source involved in the Bijani twins' separation surgery told Reuters.

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