It’s been a long wait for the family, but a formerly conjoined twin goes home after one year in the hospital, for now leaving his brother behind. For the first time, the two boys, Conner and Carter, will no longer be sharing a room at the facility where they were born. Slowly, but surely, they seem to be set well on their way to recovery.
In the hospital since birth
In December 2014, parents Michelle Brantley and Bryan Mirabal welcomed their two sons at UF Health Jacksonville, Florida. The boys were born conjoined at the abdomen, sharing a small intestine and having fused livers. A few months later, in May 2015, the doctors decided that it was time to separate the twins, in spite of the fact that they would’ve rather waited a bit longer.
However, the smaller boy, Carter, seemed to be losing the battle for resources between the two, which made the procedure necessary to save his life. There was fear that the baby would perish if he did not get sufficient nutrition. Thus, the conjoined twins underwent a 12 hour long surgical procedure where they were separated and placed under careful medical care. This was the first time in 60 years when Wolfson’s Neonatal Intensive Unit took on conjoined twins.
The boys had around 200 medical health professionals assisting them through the terribly worrying months that followed. However, the worst is behind them. Conner has recently been released from the hospital, now 13 months old. His parents are excited to spend time with their son outside of the hospital. Mirabal even expressed his wish to talk to his boy about cars, dogs, and show him his favorite fishing spot.
“It’s teaching time” as his father stated, and this is when the fun part of being a dad begins. The parents are eager now to see their son playing with his toys.
Conner weighed 22 pounds at the time of his discharge from the hospital in Florida. His twin brother, Carter, now weighs 16 pounds, but doctors stated there’s no cause for concern. In fact, according to Dr. Daniel Robie, the boy is “thriving” and it’s only a matter of time before his condition will improve. At that point, the relieved parents will be able to have both sons in their home.
Both boys are currently doing fine, and although Dr. Robie remarked that they will miss Conner after one year of daily visits, he’s going where he was always supposed to be. The infant seemed to grasp that he was departing the hospital, waving at the medical staff as his parents drove him home. In a short while, the newly born boy will hopefully be joined by his twin brother.
Image source: jacksonville.com