Innovative Procedure in Israeli Hospital Used to Save Palestinian Woman’s Pregnancy

 

Last week a Palestinian woman arrived in Israel pregnant with identical twins, one of the fetuses was suffering a severe heart defect which could endanger the life of the second. In a complex and innovative procedure the Israeli staff at Hadassah Ein Kerem successfully saved the pregnancy and the healthy twin.

Dr. Yuval Galinsky, head of Maternal-Fetal Medicine department at the Hadassah Ein Kerem hospital in Jerusalem, is one of the few experts in Israel in fetal care and is trained in performing intricate clinical procedures on fetuses whilst they are still in the womb. Last week Galinsky completed a successful procedure on a Palestinian woman who was pregnant with identical twins. The woman arrived to the hospital because one of the twins was suffering from a severe heart defect, which could effect the second twin.  

 

Galinsky explained that the woman’s case was more complicated than other similar cases, in which the twins were not identical. He explained that in a pregnancy with non-identical twins in which one of the twins is very sick, the option is given to the parents to separate and abort the unhealthy fetus without affecting the healthy child. However, Galinsky said “When there are identical twins in the womb, the fetuses share the placenta and have a connected system of blood.” “In the past it was impossible to separate the fetus’s without causing harm to the other fetus”. “Today,” explained Gielchinsky, “we now know how to save the healthy fetus by separating the sick fetus, upon parent’s decision, now can also perform this procedure in cases of identical twins.”

 In the beginning of July, Dr. Galinsky made headlines after he put a stent in the heart of a fetus whilst inside their mother's stomach. These types of medical procedures on a fetus are usually complicated and carry a high risk. However, when successfully completed these procedures can improve the chances of a healthy and save the life of the child.

The Palestinian woman who underwent this medical procedure was released from the hospital the day after, feeling much better after the procedure and returned home. Her receiving of medical care in Israel was made possible by the Civil Administration's Health Coordinator, Dalia Bassa.