Conjoined twins from Bhutan have arrived in Melbourne for separation surgery. Nima and Dawa Peldan are joined at the stomach. Doctors at the Royal Children’s Hospital will assess if the twins are viable candidates for the complex operation.

Alice Leggett reports.

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The rare conjoined Peldan sisters underwent scans in Bhutan, which suggest they likely share a liver and sternum.

Doctors here also will run testing with advanced equipment, as part of their own thorough assessment.

Hopes are high for the surgery going well.

Doctors say the procedure appears to be “at the easier end of the spectrum.”

Dr Joe Crameri, paediatric surgeon: “At the moment we remain confident we should be able to achieve that in a single operation and we should be able to achieve a good outcome for both twins.”

The Children First Foundation raised the funds to get the girls and their mother here.

But the total cost of the surgery and recovery has been estimated at more than $300,000.

The Foundation’s chief executive says the girls are depending on this life changing operation.

Elizabeth Lodge, Children First Foundation: “Mum’s really looking forward to the operation happening sooner rather than later.”

The hope is that one day, the twins will soon be able to live independent, happy lives.

Alice Leggett, QUT News.