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Old 16 May 2008, 05:49 AM
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Icon07 9-Year-Old Girl's Twin Is Found Inside Her Stomach

A 9-year-old girl who went to hospital in central Greece suffering from stomach pains was found to be carrying her embryonic twin.

http://apnews.myway.com/article/20080515/D90M9AE81.html
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Old 16 May 2008, 02:46 PM
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That's got to be something weird to grow up with. Knowing that you had a parasitic twin inside of you for nine years of your life. I think I'd wind up doing lots of weird paintings as I grew up, if such a thing had happened to me.
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Old 16 May 2008, 03:14 PM
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I saw something on PBS, TLC, or Discovery that had a 30-something yo woman who'd carried her twin in her abdomen all her life (in some country like India or something.) She had suffered from pain all that time and when the twin was discovered and removed, she led a normal, pain-free life. Totally amazing. When I think of a parasitic twin, I usually think of people with extra limbs, so this just astounds me.
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Old 16 May 2008, 03:20 PM
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I want to go on record as being firmly opposed to cannibalism, especially of immediate family members. And especially without using a good dry rub first.
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Old 16 May 2008, 05:12 PM
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I keep thinking of My Big Fat Greek Wedding: "And when they did the, the bibopsy..."
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Old 16 May 2008, 05:47 PM
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That's not so uncommon, I know at least two persons with similar experiences. In both cases, the twin never got larger than a thumb or two, but they sometimes fo.
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Old 17 May 2008, 08:44 AM
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I love stuff like parasitic twins. I caught a great documentary called "Vanished Twins" a while back about parasites, chimerism, and so on. Supposedly, as many as one in seven people are concieved as twins, but their twin never fully develops.

Usually they're just reabsorbed by the mother's body, but occasionally they're engulfed partially or fully by the other developing embryo (resulting in a parasite) or 'absorbed' fully by them. In the latter case, if the twins are non-identical, it can result in one person with two different DNA profiles. Of course, sometimes they're just non-vital and end up as a partially developed lump of tissue to be delivered along with the healthy baby.

Anyway! I'm rambling. One of the really neat and weird things about parasitic twins is that sometimes they can move of their own accord. I know for a fact someone has videotaped ultrasound evidence of a parasitic twin inside a baby moving it's limbs around. There was also supposedly a man back in the 1600s or so who had a parasitic twin hanging from his body with its head more-or-less fully developed - this twin had no organs of its own and couldn't eat or speak or anything like that, but his brother would encourage people to poke at him and they would (supposedly) get a reaction.

Parasitic twins are remarkable things.
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Old 17 May 2008, 04:01 PM
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So, I wonder at what point in pregnancy the twin is most commonly reabsorbed, and what medical developments could come along to decrease the chance of reabsorption? And if people'd want to do that? (I would, I want twins.)
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Old 17 May 2008, 05:28 PM
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The twins are usually re-absorbed very early on, and it's usually because there is something wrong with it. The rate of misscariage is actually higher than one would believe because many times, the embryo is simply reabsorbed before the woman realizes she was pregnant. This is one of the pregnancy's failsafe mechanisms, the body realizes there is something wrong with one of the embryos (chromosomal abnormality, or the egg didn't split properly) and rather than consume the body's resources developing an embryo that wouldn't be able to live outside the mother's body, it simply absorbs it.

Aside from IVF, fertility drugs, and a genetic predisposition to fraternal twins on your mother's side, I can't think of anything that would increase the chance that one would concieve (and carry to term) twins.
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Old 13 June 2008, 12:34 AM
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Well I guess it wasn't the dingo afterall...
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