1902 Encyclopedia > Abnormal Development & Congenital Malformations > Acardiac or Acranial Monsters

Abnormal Development and Congenital Malformations
(Part 10)

(10) Acardiac or Acranial Monsters

It sometimes happens in a twin pregnancy that one of the embryos fails to develop a heart and a complete vascular system of its own, depending for its nourishment upon blood derived from the placenta of its well-deformed twin by means of its ambilical vessels.

It grows into a more or less shapeless mass, in which all traces of the human form may be lost. Other viscera besides the heart will be wanting, and no head distinguishable; the most likely parts to keep the line of development are the lumbar region (with the kidneys), the pelvis, and the lower limbs. The twin of this monster may be a healthy infant.

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Abnormal Development & Congenital Malformations - Table of Contents

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