RIYADH: Top Saudi pediatric surgeon Dr. Abdullah Al-Rabeeah on Wednesday visited young Libyan conjoined twins Ahmed and Mohammed who are recovering in hospital after intricate surgery to separate them.
The brothers, who were joined at the abdomen and pelvis, have been transferred from the intensive care unit to a normal ward at the King Abdullah Specialist Children’s Hospital following the successful operation on Nov. 14.
Al-Rabeeah, who is an adviser at the Royal Court and also the general supervisor of the King Salman Humanitarian Aid and Relief Center (KSRelief), headed the 35-strong medical and surgical team for the 14-hour procedure.
Ahmed and Mohammed were attached at the lower abdomen and pelvic areas, and each child had a lower limb in addition to a third deformed limb in-between. They also shared digestive, urinary and reproductive systems and a pelvis.
During his visit to the hospital, Al-Rabeeah met with the boys’ parents and listened to an update on their medical condition and post-operative treatment and rehabilitation.
In a statement, the surgeon said that the twins were in a stable condition and showing normal vital signs. He added that they had started breastfeeding, no longer required additional nutrients, and were interacting normally with the medical team and their parents.
Their rehabilitation is likely to last between eight to 12 weeks, and he said the medical team expected Ahmed and Mohammed to remain under the Kingdom’s medical care for three to four months before returning to Libya.
Al-Rabeeah thanked King Salman and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman for their support and care, and he praised the Kingdom for being a “beacon” in its backing of humanitarian initiatives and support for the needy.
He pointed out that the medical expertise involved in the separation surgery was further evidence of the country’s achievements and proof of the health sector’s competence and excellence.
Al-Rabeeah also thanked his colleagues and members of the medical and surgical team for their efforts, diligence, dedication and pioneering work in a number of surgeries to separate conjoined twins.
Ahmed and Mohammed became the 48th set of twins in the last 30 years to undergo the operation under the Saudi National Siamese Twins Separation Program.