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Born survivors; Conjoined at birth, Rosie and Ruby were given little chance of making it through the op to separate them.

Byline: reporters@dailyrecord.co.uk LOUIE SMITH

SKIPPING hand in hand, Rosie and Ruby Formosa look like any sisters starting off at school.

But conjoined at birth, the twins have defied huge odds to get this far - after coming through a five-hour operation to separate them, which they were not expected to survive.

The girls, now four, were born joined at the abdomen and shared part of their intestine.

They were separated by emergency surgery at Great Ormond Street Hospital two hours after they were born in 2012.

Their parents, Angela and Daniel, had been warned the identical twins had a low chance of survival when medics discovered they were conjoined.

But, amazingly, they will now start primary school next month.

Angela, 35, of Bexleyheath, Kent, said: "Four years ago it wasn't in my mind that this would ever happen.

"I didn't think I'd ever see their first day at school so it is really amazing and all thanks to GOSH."

She said it was "heartbreaking" when she discovered the girls had the medical condition that accounts for one in and 200,000 births.

Angela said: "At 16 weeks, they sent me to King's College Hospital, where they found the connection between the girls. I was already worried they were monoamniotic (where twins share an amniotic sac) and conjoined was the worst outcome.

ANGELA "I was really scared and upset because I was told there was a high possibility that the girls wouldn't survive the pregnancy.

"If they did survive the pregnancy, they might not survive the birth, then they might not survive surgery.

"They couldn't tell what was connecting them. I didn't prepare to bring them home. It wasn't until they were in hospital and they'd had their operation that my husband started getting everything ready for them at home."

Rosie and Ruby were born at University College, London, by Caesarean section when Angela was 34 weeks pregnant.

The twins will start school next month with their sister Lily, nine. Angela added: "They're very excited. They are very bubbly little girls, very headstrong and very determined."

Rosie and Ruby are bubbly and headstrong little girls. They're very determined MUM ANGELA

CAPTION(S):

LITTLE WONDERS Rosie and Ruby conjoined at birth and, right, with their mum and dad

TWIN-WIN SITUATION Rosie and Ruby can't wait to start school. Picture: PA

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Title Annotation:Business; Profiles and Interviews
Publication:Daily Record (Glasgow, Scotland)
Date:Aug 30, 2016
Words:390
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