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Sanju Baghat before the surgery

The Man That Carried a Parasite Twin Inside His Stomach for 36 Years! - The worst case of fetus in fetu
By: Stefan Anitei, Science Editor - Softpedia

This story seems taken from the X-Files or a Stephen King novel, but it is in fact the most severe case of fetus in fetu ever recorded. It occurs in 1 in 500,000 live births and it is a developmental abnormality in which a parasitic twin fetus grows within its host twin.

This phenomenon takes place very early in a twin pregnancy, when one fetus wraps around and envelops the other. The dominant fetus develops "normally", while its twin turns into a parasite, feeding off its host twin's blood supply. The parasitic
twin is anencephalic (without a brain) and lacks many internal organs, being unable to survive on its own.

Normally, both twins die before birth; but this was not the case. If both survive, the parasitic twin grows so big that it starts to harm the host, which requires surgery.

The host twin can look pregnant, like the case of Sanju Bhagat, from Nagpur, India. His stomach was so swollen that he looked as if nine months pregnant and he barely could barely breathe. The big belly made the man feel uncomfortable all his life, but the problem worsened one night in June 1999. The 36 year-old man was brought to the hospital, where doctors believed they had to operate a giant tumor. "Basically the size of the tumor was so big that it was pressing on his diaphragm and that's why he was very breathless. Because of the sheer size of the tumor, it makes it difficult [to operate]. We anticipated a lot of problems," said Dr. Ajay Mehta of Tata Memorial Hospital in Mumbai.

Mehta was able to detect a tumor just after starting an operation, but in this case, gallons of fluid spilled out while he was cutting deeper and deeper and then something odd occurred. "To my surprise and horror, I could shake hands with somebody inside [Bhagat's belly]. It was a bit shocking for me." remembered Mehta.

"He just put his hand inside and he said there are a lot of bones inside [the belly]. First, one limb came out then another limb came out. Then some part of genitalia, then some part of hair, some limbs, jaws, limbs, hair.", recalled a colleague.

Inside Bhagat's stomach they encountered a bizarre, half-formed creature with feet and hands well developed, and even long fingernails. "We were horrified we were confused and amazed. There are less than 90 cases total recorded in medical literature," said Mehta.

The most unusual aspect of the case is that Bhagat had been unaware that he carried his twin inside for 36 years.

Inside Bhagat there was no placenta, the parasite twin was connected directly to his blood supply. Immediately after the surgery, Bhagat's pain and inability to breathe vanished and he recovered quickly, allowing him a normal life.

There was also another case, a Kazakh boy, who was found at 7 years old with the parasitic twin, and operated.

"All that is needed for evil to succeed is, that decent human beings doing nothing". (Edmund Burke)

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