Two-headed People

Dicephalus dibrachius diauchenos. From: Hirst & Piersol, 1893
Dicephalus dibrachius diauchenos.
from: Hirst & Piersol, 1893

Polycephaly is a condition of having more than one head. The term is derived from the Greek stems poly- meaning 'much' and kephali- meaning 'head', and encompasses bicephaly and dicephaly (both referring to two-headedness). A variation is an animal born with two faces on a single head, a condition known as diprosopus. In medical terms these are all congenital cephalic disorders.

There are many occurrences of multi-headed animals, in real life as well as in mythology. In heraldry and vexillology, the double-headed eagle is a common symbol, though no such animal is known to have ever existed.

Bicephalic or tricephalic animals are the only type of multi-headed creatures seen in the real world and form by the same process as conjoined twins: they all result from the failed separation of monozygotic twins. –Wikipedia

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Abigail Loraine Hensel and Brittany Lee Hensel

Abigail Loraine Hensel and Brittany Lee Hensel (born 7 March 1990, Minnesota, United States) are dicephalic conjoined twins. Brittany ("Britty") is the left twin, and Abigail ("Abby") is the right twin. They have two spines which join at the pelvis. They have two stomachs, three lungs, and at birth, three arms (the arm between their heads was underdeveloped and useless, and was amputated in infancy).– Wikipedia

Featured on various television programs and media outlets since their first appearance on The Oprah Winfrey Show in April 1996 (at the age of 6), this famous set of conjoined twins were given their very own reality show, Abby & Brittany, which premiered on TLC on August 28, 2012. – "Abby and Brittany Hensel," Hollywood Life, at (retrieved: 13 April 2013).

Asa and Eli Hamby
Asa and Eli Hamby

Conjoined twin brothers who share the same the same body and heart have been born today [4 December 2014] in Atlanta.

Asa and Eli Hamby - who can never be separated - were welcomed into the world at 7.32am via a pre-planned C-section to mom Robin and dad Michael and according to a dedicated 'Hamby Twins' Facebook page are healthy and well.…

Born with two heads, but sharing one body, the condition Asa and Eli have is known as dicephalic parapagus - an extremely unusual form of conjoinment, affecting only one-in-a-million births.

Asa and Eli can never be separated because they share one heart and one circulatory system.

Shortly after the birth, Robin was told there was a slight issue with her son's heart, but that they are doing well.

'There is an issue with the right side of the heart. The left side is perfect. The right side has like an extra atrium and an extra ventricle, and there's two aortas. One of the arteries is like switched, not in the right place because of having extra ones, but he said that their vital signs are stable,' said mmom [sic] to the Ledger Enquirer.

— James Nye, "'One-in-a-million' conjoined twins born to Atlanta parents: Delighted mom and dad welcome girls who share the same arms, legs and body - and will never be separated," Daily Mail, 4 December 2014, at (retrieved: 12 December 2014).

Late Friday night [5 December 2014], Michael Hamby posted an 8-minute message with his wife by his side saying, in part, "I'm sad, so sad to say that my sons passed away today at 5 o'clock. They fought long and hard."

— "Newborn conjoined twins have died, parents say," USA Today, 8 December 2014, at (retrieved: 12 December 2014).


The boy, named Kiron and weighing 12 lbs 1 oz, was born by Cesarean section on [25 August 2008] at a clinic in Keshobpur, 85 miles from the capital, Dhaka.

— "Two-headed boy born in Bangladesh,", 27 August 2008, at (accessed: 27 August 2008).

[The] two-headed baby…has died after his parents took him home because they could not afford medical care, Agence France-Presse reported [28 August 2008].

— "Two-Headed Baby Dies, Parents Couldn't Afford Medical Care,", 28 August 2008, at,2933,412193,00.html (accessed: 31 August 2008).

Syafitri, an Indonesian baby born with two heads, sleeps in a Jakarta hospital August 10, 2006. The four-day-old baby girl weighs 7 pounds and 450 grams. [Reuters]
China Daily

Egyptian two-headed (conjoined) baby (JPG)

Egyptian twins Huda, top, and Manal Abdel Nasser Mohammed Mahmoud, in their incubator at the neo-natal surgical intensive care unit in Abu el-Reesh hospital in Cairo. (AP)

Cairo - A 26-year old woman from a village in upper Egypt has given birth to a health baby girl with two heads, the Cairo daily Al-Akhbar reported on Friday. The baby can move both heads, according to the newspaper, which also published a photo of the child.

The baby was delivered by Caesarean section in a hospital in Assiut after an uncomplicated nine-month pregnancy. The baby was then brought to a specialist clinic in Cairo “to carry out further tests and to establish how to manage this unusual case”. - Sapa-DPA

— “Egyptian Mommy Gives Birth to Two-Headed Girl,” 13 June 2003, at

Argentine two-headed (conjoined) baby (JPG)

Doctors check three girls [sic] born in San Juan, Argentina some 1,280 km (800 miles) northwest of Buenos Aires, Argentina, by a 25-year old woman (who was not identified) giving triplets, one normal and two conjoined., Sunday, June 22, 2003. (AP Photo/Courtesy Diario de Cuyo)

An Argentine woman has given birth to conjoined twin girls and a boy. The twins were born fused at the head, and shared a heart and other vital organs. The woman also delivered a healthy baby boy.

The birth occurred in the provincial city of San Juan, Doctor Gonzalo Medina told the Todo Noticias cable news channel. He said the girls were born joined from the chest to mid-abdomen and shared other lower parts of the body. He said the twins, born as part of triplets with the boy, are in a stable condition. He said an initial assessment indicated it may not be possible to separate them. But he added that his staff are consulting with surgical teams in other countries. The mother, who was not identified, is in a stable condition, Medina said.

Conjoined twins occur when a single fertilized egg splits to form twins, but the separation is incomplete. They occur about once in every 200,000 live births and are three times more likely to be girls than boys.

The Associated Press, “Woman gives birth to conjoined twins girls and a boy,” Ananova, 24 June 2003.

Two-headed (conjoined) babies (JPG)

A pair of newly born conjoined twins abandoned in a New Delhi hospital by their parents will be cared for by a non-governmental organisation (AFP/Prakash Singh)

The two have separate heads, chests, hearts, stomachs, lungs and spinal cords but their liver, bladder, intestines and genitalia are fused. They also have just two legs between them.

— “India's abandoned newborn conjoined twins to be adopted by NGO,” Yahoo! News, 21 July 2003.

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A nurse holds an Egyptian baby named Manar Maged in a hospital in the city of Banha, 25 miles, north of Cairo Feb. 18, 2005. Egyptian doctors said they removed the second head from the girl, who was suffering from the rare birth defects in an operation on Saturday [19 Feb 2005]. (Photos: Reuters)

Egyptian doctors said they removed a second head from a 10-month-old girl suffering from one of the rarest birth defects in an operation [19 Feb 2005]. Abla el-Alfy, a consultant in paediatric intensive care, told Reuters at the hospital in Benha, near Cairo, that Manar Maged was in a serious but improving condition after the procedure to treat her for craniopagus parasiticus — a problem related to that of conjoined twins linked at the skull. “We are still working on the baby. After surgery…you get unstable blood pressure, you get fever. But she is stabilizing,” Alfy said. “We have some improvement.”
— Amil Khan, “Egyptian Doctors Remove Baby’s Second Head,” Yahoo! News, 19 Feb 2005.

The twin could blink and smile but was not capable of independent life.
— “‘Two-headed’ baby will eat normally soon,” MSNBC News, 14 March 2005.

  • video

    Eleven-month-old Manar Maged sleeps at Benha Hospital, north of Cairo, Egypt on Feb. 21. The girl is in stable condition after undergoing a second operation to remove excess fluid from her brain.
    — “‘Two-headed’ baby out of intensive care,” MSNBC News, 10 March 2005.

  • Dominican infant with two heads (JPG)
    Dominican infant with two heads (JPG) Dominican infant with two heads (JPG)

    Baby Rebeca Martinez sleeps at the CARE clinic in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic. (AP Photos/Walter Astrada) — (more photos)

    Eighteen surgeons, nurses and doctors will take several rotations to cut off the undeveloped tissue, clip the veins and arteries and close the skull of the seven-week-old baby using a bone graft from another part of her body.…

    Cure International, a Lemoyne, Pa.,-based charity that gives medical care to disabled children in developing countries, is paying for the surgery and follow-up care.

    — “Dominican baby born with second head scheduled for risky removal surgery,” Yahoo! News, 4 Feb 2004.

    [The girl] bled to death [7 Feb 2004] after complex surgery to remove her partially formed twin, her parents and doctors said.

    — Peter Prengaman (The Associated Press), “Infant Girl Dies After 2nd Head Removed,” Yahoo! News, 7 Feb 2004.

    Conjoined Filipino twins (JPG)  

    Arlene Aguirre gives her conjoined twins a kiss Wednesday before they were taken into the operating room.

    Two-year-old twins from the Philippines born with the tops of their heads fused together were “strong and stable” after being separated in a marathon operation that stretched into early [5 August 2004].

    Carl and Clarence Aguirre remained under heavy sedation in side-by-side beds but were expected to awaken later in the day — the first time in their short lives that they would see each other apart, their jubilant doctors said.

    — “Filipino conjoined twins separated in surgery,” USA Today, 5 Aug 2004.

    Videos: USA Today, Associated Press

    Two-Faced People

    Two-faced baby born in Northern India

    A baby girl born in Northern India Monday has two faces, it is reported by NBC affiliate KARE11. The residents of the small village where the baby was born have begun gathering to worship the child, seen as an incarnation of God.

    The girl was born in Gautam Budh Nagar in the suburbs of Delhi, She was born to Vinod Singh and Sushma at Saifai Hospital in Dadr, India.

    "Both mother and the child are healthy and doing fine," Dr Aas Mohammad, of Saifai Hospital, told

    — "Baby With Two Faces Born in India," FOX News, 13 March 2008, at,2933,337492,00.html.

    Kathmandu: Hundreds of people thronged the house of Sitaram Chaudhary in Saptari district in eastern Nepal to have a glance at the new born girl child with four eyes, two mouths and two noses.

    Shamvawati, 24, wife of Chaudhary gave birth to the girl child yesterday, reported an english daily Kantipur.

    As news of the birth of such a child spread, people from far and wide rushed to Chaudhary’s house to worship her as an incarnation of goddess Bhagawati.

    “The baby girl is in good health and can see with all her four eyes and sucks milk with both mouths,” said her mother.

    — UNI, “Girl with four eyes born in Nepal,” Mid-Day, 10 June 2003.

    Rajbiraj: The baby-girl…died [the evening of 17 June 2003] of medical complications.

    “The baby developed some breathing difficulties…and died after few hours,” said Sitaram Chaudhary, father to the baby girl.

    The baby girl was born to Sitaram Chaudhary and Sambhavati Chaudhary of Hardiya VDC-2 in Saptari district.

    — KOL, “Strange Baby Girl Passes Away,”, 18 June 2003.

    Faith and Hope, Australian diprosopus conjoined twins (JPG)

    Faith and Hope lived for almost three weeks before passing away on Tuesday [27 May 2014]. The twin girls from Sydney suffered from diprosopus, a condition where conjoined twins are born with one body but two separate faces and brains.

    Before their death, the parents said their little girls had developed distinct personalities.

    — Carol Kuruvilla, "Rare Australian conjoined twins who had one body and two faces die," Daily News, 28 May 2014, at (accessed: 1 June 2014).

    Two-mouthed man

    The 16 July 2004 episode of Ripley’s Believe it or Not episode contained a segment about a man with two mouths. Scans showed he had an underdeveloped twin located within his body complete with partial brain. Successful surgery removed the twin from his face.

    Frank and Louie, the two-headed cat Two-faced Cats – Diprosopus, also known as craniofacial duplication, is an extremely rare form of conjoined twins.
    Cy, the one-eyed kitten One-eyed Cats – Cyclopia (also cyclocephaly or synophthalmia) is…characterized by the failure of the embryonic prosencephalon to properly divide the orbits of the eye into two cavities. – Contains frank discussions and vivid images of human beings with birth defects.
    Seeing through a cat's eyes Brain Implants – A team of US scientists have wired a computer to a cat’s brain and created videos of what the animal was seeing.
    More Animal Oddities

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