Salt Lake City (ABC 4 News) – Erin Herrin, the mother of conjoined twins Kendra and Maliyah Herrin, empathizes with the family of two sisters being separated at Stanford University's Children's Hospital. Her daughters were separated five years ago.
Two-year-old conjoined twin sisters Angelina and Angelica Sabuco share a liver, chest, and abdomen. The Herrin twins were joined at the pelvis and abdomen, and shared some organs, tissues, and legs.
The surgery to separate the Herrin four-year-olds was 26-hours long. The years leading up to that surgery were full of questions about the chances of survival. Erin Herrin says it was a very difficult decision. “It’s such a tough decision and nobody knows how difficult it is until you are put in that situation."
The girl now share an interest in animals, but their mom, Erin, says they are very different and being separate has magnified their individuality. "Before Maliyah was more shy, and she is kind of coming out of her shell each day and Kendra was always outgoing but they are really coming into their own.""
The girls prefer to scoot around the house, but use walkers to get around outside their home. Despite what appears to be an easy adjustment Erin says this has not been and easy journey. Each girl has had more than one hundred surgeries. Many were done to adjust the rods in their backs to accommodate growth. “After the initial surgery, we had nine months of recovery, and then we would have different surgeries that would set us back more, and so it's just kind of trying to get through all of the surgeries that they have had and to keep going."
She says despite the challenges, there are no regrets. The family says it‘s a miracle they are here, and they are a blessing. “I don't think I would have any regrets, and I think the girls love the way they are now."