The conjoined twins born in July to a couple from Sion died of multi-organ failure on Tuesday. Gufran and Mohammad, who were born at Sion Hospital, were brought to Lokmanya Tilak Municipal General Hospital, Sion, after they developed high fever and cough. They died during treatment.
Their father Irshad Khan said they had fever since Monday night, which worsened by Tuesday morning.
Irshad said their condition returned to normal by 3pm. “They were sleeping, but when doctors checked on them after half-an-hour, they told us the twins died in their sleep,” he said.
As the children died within 48 hours of being admitted to the hospital, their bodies were sent for a post-mortem to establish the cause of death, according to the norms of medico-legal cases. The family said they appealed to hospital officials and asked them not to conduct the post-mortem. “The hospital said the bodies would be handed over only after the post-mortem. We then consented,” said Irshad.
The forensic analysis and paperwork took more than 22 hours. The bodies were handed over at 2.45pm on Wednesday.
Senior police inspector from Sion police station, Dattaram Girap said doctors told them to start the post-mortem only at 10pm on Tuesday.
Dr Suleman Merchant, dean, Sion Hospital said there was no delay on the part of the hospital. “As post-mortems don’t take place at night, we fast tracked the process on Wednesday morning as it was a special case. Sion Hospital took care of follow ups, treatment and even food for the twins. The longest survival period for such conjoined twins is two weeks worldwide, but they survived for three months owing to our efforts,” said Merchant.
Twins shared organs
The twins were born on July 27 with a condition known as dicephalic paraphagus (a rare form of partial twinning where there are two heads side-by-side on one torso). The infants shared a heart and kidneys. Only one of them had a pair of lungs. They had one pair of legs and three hands, with a common hand. They had separate brains and spinal cords. Experts from the hospital had suggested a separation surgery to save at least one child, but the family refused, considering the possible medical complications. The twins were taken home.