December 23, 2011 5:05 AM EST
Two Headed Baby and 7 Other Strange Birth Defects
A two-headed baby, Jesus and Emanuel, was born in Brazil this week.The baby suffers from the condition dicephalic parapagus, a rare form of twin conjoinment, leaving the child with one body, one heart, two backbones and two fully functioning brains.
Brazilian doctors say that they are unable to separate the newborn because it only has one set of organs, however the baby appears to be in good health.
Jesus and Emanuel is not the first two-headed baby to be born. There have been 14 reported cases of dicephalic parapagus, a rare form of conjoinment, over the past 200 years.
One of the most famous examples of dicephalic parapagus is Abigail and Brittany Hensel.The Hensel twins each have a separate head, but also have conjoined bodies. The difference between the Hensel twins and Jesus and Emanuel, is that they have two hearts, two stomachs, four lungs, and other non-shared organs.
We took a look at the case of Jesus and Emanuel as well as seven other birth defects such as conjoined twins, fused limbs, crainopagus parasiticus, anencephaly, Hutchinson-Gilford progeria syndrome, ectopia cordis and cyclopia.
Related Article: Two-Headed Baby Reminds Doctors of Abigail, Brittany Hensel (PHOTOS)
Dicephalic Parapagus Twins (Two-Headed Twins)
A Brazillian mother has given birth to fully functioning conjoined twins, Jesus and Emanuel, that have two autonomous brains, separate spines, but just one heart.
Jesus and Emanuel is not the first two-headed baby to be born. There have been 14 reported cases of dicephalic parapagus, a rare form of conjoinment, over the past 200 years, according to Yahoo News. One of the most recent examples was also in Brazil this year when Sueli Ferreira gave birth to a child with two heads, but sadly the baby died only a few hours later because of a lack of oxygen to one of the heads.
Siamese Twins (Conjoined Twins)
Siamese Twins are identical twins whose bodies are joined together. Cases of conjoined twins are very rare with the range of occurrences from 1 to 50,000 births to 1 in 100,000 births. The survival rate for Siamese twins is approximately 25%.
Pictured here one-and-half-year-old conjoined twins Sita (R) and Gita rest on a hospital bed in the eastern Indian city of Patna. The twins, whose urinary tract and faecal tract were joint, were successfully separated in 2010.
Babies are rarely born with fused limbs, but in some cases fingers or toes may be fused prior to birth. In a rare case in Peru, Milagros Cerron was born with her entire legs completely fused. One in 70,000 babies is born with fused limbs.
Pictured here doctor Luis Rubio (L) holds 13-month-old Milagros Cerron at the hospital in Lima in 2005. The Peruvian baby girl known as the "Little Mermaid" was able to wriggle her two legs after her fused limbs were surgically separated in what local doctors said was the second such operation worldwide.
Craniopagus parasiticus is a birth defect that has only been documented in ten cases, with only three surviving birth. The condition occurs when a full grown baby is born with an extra head attached to his or her body from an unborn twin.
Pictured here an Egyptian baby named Manar Maged lies waiting for an operation at a hospital in the city of Banha, 40 km, 25 miles, north of Cairo in 2005. Egyptian doctors said they removed a second head from a 10-month-old girl suffering from one of the rarest birth defects in an operation. Maged was in a serious but improving condition after the procedure to treat her for craniopagus parasiticus. As in the case of a girl who died after surgery in the Dominican Republic a year ago, the second twin had developed no body. The head that was removed from Manar had been capable of smiling and blinking but not independent life, doctors said.
Anencephaly is a condition where a child is born without a brain or spinal cord. There is no cure and anencephalic babies almost always die during childbirth. The baby is usually born blind, deaf, unconscious and unable to feel pain. If the child is not a stillborn, it will usually die within a few days from cardiac arrest.
Hutchinson-Gilford Progeria Syndrome
Hutchinson-Gilford Progeria Syndrome is a rare disease that occurs in 1 in 8 million births. The condition ages the child's body so rapidly its victims die before they have truly experienced youth. Children will lose hair, develop wrinkles and appear much older than they are.
Picture here Nguyen Thi Ngoc, 13, reads a book at home in Ho Chi Minh City. Ngoc is Vietnam's first known case of Hutchinson-Gilford Progeria Syndrome. Ngoc, who lives in Ho Chi Minh City, comes from a poverty-stricken family and local hospitals lack the means and expertise to treat her.
Baby Suffers Ectopia Cordis
Ryan Marquiss, 3, is the first child to survive being born with his heart outside of his body, a condition known as ectopia cordis. The Pennsylvania boy was born with half his heart protruding out of his chest cavity and has survived against all odds. Pictured here is a baby girl who was born with her heart outside her body. Doctors at NICVD say this is the first reported case of such anomaly in Pakistan. They attempted to place the heart and great vessels into the thoracic cavity under an artificial membrane.
Cyclopia is a rare birth defect where a child is born with one eye in the middle of his or her head. The baby also typically lacks a functional nose. There has been some speculation that the condition may be related to certain cancer treatment drugs and toxins taken by pregnant women.