A Chinese infant girl was born pregnant with two fetuses. It may sound as a completely outrageous situation, but the condition which is extremely rare does happen. Fetus is fetu is when a twin does not evolve properly inside its mother’s womb and it is absorbed by its sibling.
The twin fetuses were located in the girl’s abdomen and were around 9 week old. One of them weighed half an ounce and the other a third of an ounce; each of them had four limbs, intestines, an anus, a rib cage and a spine. They were connected through an umbilical cord to a placenta-like mass.
Naturally, the twins couldn’t have been conceived by the little girl so doctors believe that the fertilization was made by the girl’s parents. The fertilized eggs simply migrated and were absorbed by the fetus’ body and continued to grow inside her.
The infant girl who was carrying the twin fetuses underwent surgery to remove them. The two week old girl survived the operation and has become the second case to be reported in the Chinese region. Fetus in fetu occurs in 1 in half a million births around the world and there are only about 200 documented cases of this strange condition.
In 2014, doctors removed a calcified fetus from an 84-year-old woman. The fetus was not a twin, but her own child who died and was calcified by her body. The World Health Organization (WHO) classified this type of disease and called it mature teratoma. A teratoma is a rare tumor which is known to grow hair and teeth inside it. Teratomas are largely benign. These fetus in fetu can be considered as being alive the same way a tumor is considered to be alive. It feeds on the blood and nutrients of its host, but fetus in fetu do not have a brain or move around inside the body like a normal fetus.
One of the most famous cases of a parasitic twin, is that of Manar Mager who was born with a twin sister attached to her head. The parasitic twin had no limbs, but could smile, cry and breathe on her own, but could not survive without her sister. Still, doctors decided that if Manar were to have a chance, it would be without her conjoined twin, Islaam. The doctors removed Islaam from Manar, but unfortunately Manar died 14 months after the surgery, due to a brain infection.
Image Source: Nature
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