Siamese twins are also called "Conjoined Twins" and are born joined at identical sites. They are very rare. Siamese twins' result when the fertilized egg fails to divide completely, as it does with most identical twins. often, one twin does not develop and may appear to be an extra limb or even a tumor on the healthier twin. joined twins are always identical. Surgical separation is often possible. an operation was successfully performed in 1953 on twins who were joined near the base of the spine and shared the lower intestinal tract, and in 1979 on twins joined at the skull.
Siamese twins occur 1 in 50,000 to 1 in 100,000 births, and three times more likely to be girls than boys. Siamese twins joined at the head is the rarest form and occurs about 1 in 2.5 million births. Twins that are joined at the chest is the most common form and is found in 70% of siamese twins.
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This page last updated on 03/31/98