SALT LAKE CITY - A pair of 4-year-old conjoined-twin girls have been separated after surgery, but they face a long road to recovery, doctors in Utah said today.
Kendra and Maliyah Herrin were born with their bodies joined at the abdomen and with a common pelvis. They shared a kidney and a liver while each controlled one leg.
"We'd just like to formally announce that we have two separate little girls," their father, Jake Herrin, told reporters at Primary Children's Medical Center in Salt Lake City after the 16-hour operation.
Details of the girls' conditions were not released, and the family declined to reveal personal information about their anatomies. Maliyah will be placed on dialysis until a kidney transplant can be found.
The twins were hospitalized several weeks ago so that doctors could begin stretching their skin. A child psychologist also prepared them mentally by giving them conjoined-twin dolls.
"We've learned so much throughout the four years," said their mother, Erin Herrin. "We can't really put it into words how this day has been. It's changed our lives forever and I hope soon we will be able to find the blessing of them being separated."