Lucknow: Doctors operate on a twin with no heart, inside mother’s womb

Doctors in Lucknow performed this complicated surgery in order to save the life of a healthy baby who was supplying blood to an underdeveloped foetus twin. The surgery was performed in the nick of time as the baby was on the brink of heart failure


  • Doctors attached to Sanjay Gandhi Post Graduate Institute of Medical Sciences, Lucknow, have saved a life of a baby, who was growing with a twin who did not have a heart inside the mother’s womb
  • Doctors say the baby who was developing normally, was pumping blood to his own body and the body of the abnormal twin as well
  • This was taking a toll on the heart of the normal baby, and would have led to the heart failure.

A team led by Prof Dr Mandakini Pradhan, Head of Maternal and Reproductive Department have successfully delivered the complicated pregnancy.

Ankita Pandey, an expectant mother, was admitted to Lucknow’s Sanjay Gandhi Institute of Medical Sciences, in the month of June 2018. Post examination, the doctors realised that her pregnancy would be a challenging task, as one of the twin foetuses, had a rare congenital heart abnormality.


One of the foetuses was not having a heart, which in medical terminology is called ‘Acardiac twin.’

While speaking to My Medical Mantra, Prof Dr Mandakini Pradhan said, “An underdeveloped twin without a heart was drawing blood and nutrients from the other twin who was developing normally. The normal foetus was pumping blood for his own body and for the other underdeveloped twin as well. Owing to which, his heart was adversely affected, which could have led to a heart failure.”

Prof Dr Mandakini Pradhan
Prof Dr Mandakini Pradhan

Prof Dr Pradhan further added, “In order to save the normally growing baby, we decided to perform an intervention inside the mother’s womb. So, we used a thick bore needle to pass an alternate current through this to the targeted area. By doing this procedure, we burnt the tissues supplying blood to the abnormal foetus, and managed to stop the blood supply.”

Doctors say this is one of the rare forms of complicated pregnancy and in India; is witnessed in just one case in 3-4 lakh pregnancies.

Prof Dr Pradhan added, “After doing this procedure, the mother and the normally growing baby was observed, and on Thursday, August 30, the mother delivered a baby. Both the mother and the baby are fine.”