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Conjoined Twins: Bioethics, Medicine and the Law

Conjoined twins are fused twins resulting from incomplete division of a single blastocyst, 13 to 16 days post fertilization (1). Complete division of a human zygote within seven days of fertilization yields identical monozygotic twins (1). Fused body components, overlapping visceral components and impaired organogenesis characterize this anomaly (1–5). Classification of conjoined twins is based on anatomical site of fixation, with the Greek suffix pagus (meaning, that which is fixed) being employed to indicate head (craniopagus), abdominal (omphalopagus) or pelvic (ischiopagus) fixation (1, 2).
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e-Published: 06 Feb, 2014
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