Chromosomal and Genetic Conditions
Conjoined Twins Symptoms and Diagnosis
Symptoms of Conjoined Twins
Conjoined twins may be connected to each other in many different ways. Their health and any symptoms depend on how each child developed, which structures they share and how well their organs work.
Most conjoined twins are born early (prematurely). This means their lungs probably have not finished developing, and breathing problems are common.
Conjoined Twins Diagnosis
In most cases, doctors see that twins are conjoined during a routine ultrasound late in the first trimester of pregnancy or in the second trimester. Seattle Children’s Prenatal Diagnosis and Treatment Program provides care for pregnant women and their conjoined twins.
Once your doctor can see by ultrasound where the twins are joined, the doctor will have more information on the structures the twins may share. Other imaging studies can also take pictures of the twins before birth. They include echocardiography and prenatal MRI (magnetic resonance imaging).
After birth, conjoined twins need many other imaging studies and tests to learn about their health. Your doctor will want to find out more about their anatomy, or structure, and how well their bodies work.
Studies and tests your babies need will depend on where the twins are joined and their health. A few of the common tests for conjoined twins are:
- Heart tests, such as echocardiography and electrocardiography
- CT (computed tomography) scan
If you have questions about conjoined twins treatment or prenatal diagnosis, call our General and Thoracic Surgery Department at 206-987-2794, extension 4, or our Prenatal Diagnosis and Treatment Program at 206-987-5629.