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Conjoined Twins Separated by Surgical Team at Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC During Complex, 24-Hour Procedure
Date:2/16/2009

o watching them live long, happy lives."

The twins spent the majority of their first two years of life as patients at Children's Hospital, undergoing more than 10 procedures during the 18-month period of preparation. The procedures included the placement of tissue expanders, which were used to stretch the skin to allow for reconstruction following the separation. They likely will require further reconstructive procedures in the future, according to Dr. Losee.

"It was such a difficult decision to make, and I knew the separation involved a very complicated surgery. I was scared, but I wanted the girls to be separated so they could give them the best life possible. When I met the team at Children's Hospital in Pittsburgh, I knew this is where we should come even though it is so far from my family and friends in Cleveland," said the girls' mother, Catherine Nickson. "The entire team has been amazing, and I can't thank them enough for all they've done for my girls."

Dagian and Danielle were ischiopagus twins, meaning they were joined at the pelvis and shared a colon. Conjoined twins are rare and occur in about one in every 100,000 births.

The team leaders from the various specialties involved in their separation are:

Timothy Kane, MD, FACS, FAAP -- Division of Pediatric General and Thoracic Surgery

Francis Schneck, MD -- Division of Pediatric Urology

Stephen Mendelson, MD -- Division of Orthopaedic Surgery

Franklyn Cladis, MD -- Division of Pediatric Anesthesiology

Sheila Willis, RN -- Perioperative Nursing

Megan Natali, PA-C -- Physician assistant in the Division of Pediatric Plastic Surgery

Patricia Dubin, MD -- Division of Pulmonary Medicine, Allergy and Immunology

For more information about Dr. Losee or the team, please visit www.chp.edu.


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SOURCE Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC
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