Surgeons in Australia separating conjoined girls from Bhutan

Nima and Dawa were known to share a liver but could also share part of the bowel which would complicate the surgery

The paediatrician said his team was well prepared for the surgery and there weren't any complications or major bleeding during the procedure.

15-month-old babies Nima and Dawa, from Bhutan, South Asia, underwent a six hour operation on November 9.

Head of paediatric surgery Dr Joe Crameri, who led the operation, said there had been no surprises despite fears the girls' bowel were shared.

He said the operation was expected to last around six hours and would involve 18 medical staff divided into two teams, one for each girl. It is also possible they share a bowel.

The case of two U.S. boys joined at the top of their skulls attracted global attention in 2016 as doctors successfully operated to separate them.

As well as the issues with mobility and comfort, Lodge said the twins had recently been losing weight, which had been a concern to doctors who are now observing them closely. "But there is nothing on the image that suggests that", Crameri said.

"The success of surgery depends on where the twins are joined and how many and which organs are shared, as well as the experience and skill of the surgical team".

On Thursday afternoon, the twins travelled to Melbourne from Kilmore, where they had been staying at the country retreat of the Children First Foundation.

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Before the operation, their mother was "a little bit scared" but "very pleased" that the time to split up her daughters had finally arrived, according to spokesperson for the charity that funded the twins' flight to Australia and their surgery.

She will spend Friday praying and meditating.

"While it was all swimming next to one another, it wasn't connected in any major way, " he said.

"She still has this extraordinary calmness about her, which is just wonderful".

They were brought to Melbourne with their mother last month, but doctors delayed the surgery until Friday to improve the girls' nutrition needs.

Dr Sherub first met the girls when they were only a day old and played a major role in getting the twins to Australia, having already spent time in the country as the victor of a medical scholarship.

The surgery that was planned to take place on October 12 had to be postponed to allow the girls to build strength as they were found to be underweight for their age.

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