The mother of twins who were conjoined at birth has said she did not think they would "get this far", as the family prepares to celebrate the girls' first birthday.
Rosie and Ruby Formosa, who were born joined at the abdomen and shared part of the intestine, needed an emergency operation to separate them.The identical twins, who celebrate their first birthday today, underwent an operation at London's Great Ormond Street Hospital (Gosh) the day after they were born.
When asked if she thought the twins would make it to their first birthday she said: "No", adding:
Consultant paediatric surgeon Ed Kiely, who was part of the team who operated on the girls, said: "We see perhaps one set of twins a year on average. They're not that rare but because of antenatal diagnosis they don't always get born.
"Even if they get born, two-thirds of them are stillborn or die very quickly because of cardiac problems. For conjoined twins in general, survival chances are quite low.
"Conjoined twinning occurs in one in every 50,000 or 60,000 pregnancies in Europe. And about one in 200,000 (of all) deliveries is a conjoined twin with the chance of survival."
He said the hospital is "happy" with the progress the girls have made and is "delighted" they are now celebrating their first birthday.
The twins will have to have regular check-ups throughout childhood about once or twice a year, he added.