Parents Shocked After Their Baby Was Born With ‘Fetus’ Inside Her Stomach

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It’s probably a good thing this baby was born in the hospital. A newborn baby girl in Israel was found to have at least one fetus inside her stomach.

A mother was probably beyond shocked after having a natural birth at Assuta Medical Center in Ashdod, Israel earlier this month. Her little girl’s stomach was unusually enlarged, prompting doctors to order X-rays and ultrasounds.

There May Have Been More Than 1 Fetus Inside the Baby’s Stomach

The Mirror

The Times of Israel reports that they discovered a 1 in 500,000 cases of “fetus-in-fetu.” A partially developed embryo had formed inside the newborn baby girl’s stomach. Doctors removed at least two malformed gestational sacs. They believe that there was more than one fetus inside the baby’s stomach.

“We were surprised to discover that it was an embryo,” said Assuta’s director of neonatology, Omer Globus. “But it did not look like an embryo as you imagine it… We think that there was more than one there, and we are still checking that.” 

Doctors spotted a heart and some bones but that does not mean that a baby was actually going to continue forming inside the newborn girl.

The exact cause of fetus-in-fetu is still being researched. But experts think one reason could be a case of “parasitic twins.” The Cleveland Clinic defines parasitic twins as “a type of conjoined twin where one fetus stops developing but remains attached to its twin.”

In the case of fetus-in-fetu, the conjoined twin actually forms inside a part of the other twin at a very early stage of prenatal development.

“It happens as part of the fetal development process when there are cavities that close during development and one of the embryos enters such a space,” said Omer Globus. “The fetus inside partially develops but does not live and remains there.”

Doctors performed surgery to remove the fetus from the newborn baby girl. She’s now at home with her mom and doing well. The mom has three other children but luckily, no grandchildren yet!

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