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Egyptian twins flown in for surgical separation.

Byline: Mohammed Rasooldeen

RIYADH: Following instructions from Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah, two conjoined twins arrived from Egypt at the Riyadh Airbase on Tuesday in a special Medevac plane to undergo an operation to separate them.

The twins, Mahmoud and Hassan, and their parents were received by Dr. Bandar Al-Ganawi, director of medical affairs at the King Abdulaziz Medical City. The twins were admitted to the hospital's pediatric ward where they will undergo a series of tests before the surgery.

"It would take a few weeks to complete the medical tests to ascertain the viability of the surgery," said Al-Ganawi, adding that the authorities still do not know at which points the twins are joined.

He said pediatricians who have experience in separation surgery will conduct the tests and submit reports to a surgical team that will decide the course of action to be taken based on preliminary examinations.

The twins' parents will be provided with food and lodging in the hospital compound until after the surgery.

In the latest such operation at the hospital, two Iraqi twins, Ayad and Zeyad, were separated on Oct. 25 last year by a medical team headed by Dr. Abdullah Al-Rabeeah, chief executive officer of the medical city.

Al-Rabeeah performed the first conjoined twin separation surgery in the Kingdom on Dec. 31, 1990, at Riyadh's King Faisal Specialist Hospital. The operation, which was successful, was performed on two Saudi girls joined at the stomach. Since then 13 sets of conjoined twins have been successfully separated in the Kingdom.

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Publication:Arab News (Jeddah, Saudi Arabia)
Date:Feb 12, 2009
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