A Filipina schoolgirl has lived her entire life with a parasitic twin growing out of her chest and abdomen, but will soon undergo surgery to have it removed, The Irish Mirror is reporting.
Veronica Cominguez, 14, has lived with the undeveloped twin for her entire life. When she and the twin were in utero, their mother, Flora Cominguez, even had names for both of them. Unfortunately, the twin didn’t fully develop. And because the family lacked access to medical care, the twin was essentially absorbed into Veronica’s body. Veronica was born with the twin’s foot, arm, and leg protruding from her own abdomen.
As Veronica has grown, so has the twin; Veronica says she even trims its nails.
Unfortunately, the twin – besides being unsightly – has led to other problems for the young lady.
“It’s heavy, it limits my movement. It keeps swinging. My dress often gets wet.”
In fact, the twin causes secretions to leak out of Veronica’s navel. Oftentimes it looks like blood. Her mother says that the goo that seeps out often smells like human waste.
Thanks to the kindness and generosity of her neighbors, who raised money for an operation, Veronica will soon be flown to neighboring Thailand, according to a government spokesperson.
”It has been arranged for Veronica to have an operation. and we hope that she will live a normal, healthy life after this. Life has not been easy for her but she’s a very sensible, clever and mature girl. She’s a wonderful pupil. Everyone is very pleased for her that she can soon have an operation.”
Dr. Beda Espineda, the pediatric surgeon who has been coordinating Veronica’s care, expects a simple and routine operation, according to The Daily Mail.
”Most of these cases can be removed. Because, usually, the body structures involved are not vital. Most of them are just attached to the skin or bones. For surgeons, it is easy to remove.”
Parasitic twins are extremely rare, according to Baby Med – about one in 1 million births.
In 2017, as The Chicago Tribune reported at the time, a young girl from Africa with a parasitic twin was flown to Chicago for an operation. Ten-month-old Dominique from Ivory Coast, or Cote d’Ivoire, in West Africa, was born with two spines and an extra set of legs protruding from her neck. However, following surgery, the infant girl made a full recovery and, like Veronica, is expected to live a full and normal life.