Thoracopagus conjoined twins

Thoracopagus conjoined twins are, as the name suggests, conjoined twins united at their thorax.

Fusion is typically face-to-face, at the upper thorax to the umbilicus with a common sternum, diaphragm, and upper abdominal wall. Very often a common pericardial sac is present as well as a degree of cardiac fusion, which makes surgical intervention difficult, if not impossible.

Liver and biliary tree fusion is also noted in a quarter of cases. Less commonly, fusion of small intestine may also be encountered.

The pelvises, large intestines, and urinary tracts are usually separate. 

Antenatal fetal echocardiography is imperative in these cases, with further evaluation performed in the postnatal period. Cardiac angiography and cardiac MRI may also be required to fully evaluate the anatomy.

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Article Information

rID: 45854
Tags: stubs, refs
Synonyms or Alternate Spellings:
  • Thoracopagus twins

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