Skip to comments.Amid Ethics Debate, Conjoined Twins Celebrate First Birthday
Posted on 04/05/2011 1:35:13 AM PDT by Pinkbell
Twin brothers Kameron and Kaydon Hayes celebrated their first birthday this week. They both love the character Elmo on "Sesame Street." They smile. Sometimes Kaydon babbles, trying to talk. Holding hands, they kick happily when they play and often poke each other in the face.
Born at 37 weeks weighing a combined total of 10 pounds, the boys -- who weren't expected to live -- share more than a special bond; they share a liver and a malformed heart.
Their birth and subsequent medical care touched off debate among doctors and medical ethics experts who said the conjoined twins are destined to die.
But their mother, Brianna Manns, pushed onward, refusing to sign a "Do not resuscitate" order in the boys' early months. She now is focused on their everyday growth.
"Kaydon, he's very laid back. He'll sleep all day if you let him. Kameron is very curious, social as well. He has a temper -- knows what he likes and what he doesn't like," Manns told WGN-TV in Chicago, before the twins celebrated their first birthday Thursday.
"Even though they are conjoined, they are two separate babies to me," Manns told the Chicago Tribune for a story published today. "They are very different in every type of way."
Medical experts said the twins can't be separated and aren't candidates for a heart transplant because of their complicated anatomy.
Last summer, doctors at the University of Illinois Medical Center at Chicago -- where the twins still are hospitalized -- described the emotional toll of caring for them. They worry that their interventions went too far, expressing concern that the infants are the ones who would suffer.
(Excerpt) Read more at aolnews.com ...
At the time, the twins were unable to breathe without a ventilator and were fed through tubes. The babies periodically went into distress and had to be resuscitated to prevent them from dying.
Today, doctors told the newspaper, Kameron breathes without assistance and Kaydon, who is doing most of the breathing for the two, is being weaned off the ventilator. They no longer experience the medical crises that require resuscitation.
To see a video of these two babies, check the link.
Needless to say, the comments to this article are not positive. Because these babies are on Medicaid and the cost is high ($4 million), because some claim they are suffering, because they are said not to be able to make a positive contribution, and because they will die at some point in the future, many people believe treatment should be ceased, or at least they should not be resucitated. One commenter says that the value of a human life comes from the ability of said life to contribute to society.
I believe the value of a human life is innate because human beings are made in the image and likeness of God. I know the cost is high, but what price do we put on a human life? These babies are able to interact with their mother and play with toys. If we as a society decide to take the decisions away from the families and patients, couldn't this apply to other situations? If the cost is high and the majority determine a person unworthy of life, can treatment be ceased against the families' wishes? I know the state is paying for it, and I think that is a problem if government healthcare is implemented.
The leftists are capable of a level of evil unlike anything the world has ever seen.
Interesting to read that the doctors are whining about the emotional toll on themselves.
But then, it is Chicago.
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It's possible that they were asked by an interviewer if they were affected by the plight of these children and confessed that they were. Unless we see the transcript, we'll never know.
I would not kill my babies and I would not kill one that the other might live. But I am an old man and what do I know?
Thanks for sharing your concern.
So, would they apply the same standard to the millions on generational welfare?
False choice. A charity should pick up the tab. That $4 million in tax dollars can be more efficiently used to provide services to numerous people in need.
The entitlement attitude exemplified by the mother is why many able and productive people are priced out of basic health care.
These black hole cases a study in immoral wolves in "moral" sheep's clothing.
There is no mention of a father in this article.
Let me guess, you can't wait for Zero's death panels to get into full swing.
It's shocking that all of you libertarians claim to oppose Obama, you SUPPORT nearly all of his policies.
I believe that there is a “boyfriend”. These poor children.
It’s really heartening to see such a humanitarian in our midst.
“Bioethicists” = “Death mongers”.
No, because those are democrat voters.
It is unlikely these babies will ever vote so they don’t count.