Surgery Looms for Teen Mom's Conjoined Newborns

Brit parents refused to abort Faith and Hope
By Mary Papenfuss,  Newser User
Posted Nov 30, 2008 6:07 AM CST
Conjoined twins Faith and Hope

(Newser) – A medical decision will be made this week on when and how to separate the conjoined newborns of an 18-year-old London mom. The baby girls are joined from chest to navel and share a liver, but have two hearts, reports the Daily Mail. "They're little fighters," said the mom, who named the babies Faith and Hope. After their birth she said she "couldn't stop looking at them" because they are "so beautiful."

Doctors advised the twins' parents to abort them, but the young couple refused. Doctors plan to divide the single liver, which will regenerate. But both hearts have several abnormalities that may require surgery. Surgeons are also worried about separating a combined circulatory system. They initially planned to wait until the twins were older and stronger, but now believe that may present larger risks. Conclusions reached at a meeting among physicians this week will be presented to parents for a final decision.
(Read more conjoined twins stories.)