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Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 19 September 2018

Risky surgery pays off as mother and twins are saved in Abu Dhabi

One of Mareen Thomas's babies dropped into her pelvis region only less than half way through her pregnancy

Mareen Thomas, 29, delivered her two babies 11 weeks premature. Burjeel Hospital
Mareen Thomas, 29, delivered her two babies 11 weeks premature. Burjeel Hospital

A set of twins were born to an Abu Dhabi resident after it seemed she would lose them both 16 weeks into her pregnancy.

Less than half way into her pregnancy, Mareen Thomas, 29, began experiencing intense lower body cramps, nausea and bleeding.

Tests showed that one of the babies had dropped from her womb into her pelvis region, a position babies get into just before birth.

“If not corrected immediately, as is often the case due the prevalence of complications with such cases, the baby would not have survived and could have resulted in losing both babies due to severe trauma on the body,” said Dr Fady Hachem, a consultant at the obstetrics and gynaecology department at Burjeel Hospital.

After discussing the high-risk conditions with Mrs Thomas and her family, Dr Hachem performed a cervical cerclage. The procedure involves stitching a strong band of thread around the cervix which is tightened to close the cervix and stop a premature baby from slipping further. The band is generally removed at the 37th week of pregnancy.

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Read more:

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UAE Helping Hands: new mum left with Dh373,000 hospital bill after baby is born 15 weeks early

Mothers of premature babies in UAE help families cope

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Typically, the procedure is safe when performed 12-14 weeks into pregnancy, but Mrs Thomas was already 16 weeks along at the time.

“The fact that Mrs Thomas’ pregnancy was beyond the safe weeks and there were two babies in her womb made this case highly sensitive and high risk, if not handled with extreme care – not one, not two, but all three are at risk,” said Dr Hachem.

During surgery, Dr Hachem had to carefully guide the highly sensitive amniotic sac back into a safe position and stitch the cervix.

Three months later, Ms Thomas delivered her twins – a boy and a girl, weighing 1.1kg and 990g respectively.

The babies were born 11 weeks early and had to be kept in neonatal ICU for 40 days before being discharged.

“The babies are getting stronger and healthier each day. Ms Thomas is better and is now a proud mother of twins,” said Dr Hachem.

“When doctors from other hospitals turned down my case, we started losing hope in saving my babies, but Dr Hachem took the risk and performed the surgery,” said Ms Thomas.

“My husband and I will be forever grateful to him and his medical team, for saving the lives of our little angels, there are no words to express our heartfelt joy as a family.”

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