Updated: Both twins are finally home with their family at an interval of more than two weeks – JamieLynn was the first to leave on March 21, while Amie (released on Apirl 7) had to stay longer due to her recovery from a chest surgery. The hospital statement confirmed that Amie required special care in the neonatal intensive care unit during her recovery period. In response to the news, Amanda expressed her feelings, saying, “It’s a lot of emotions – I’m excited and happy. It feels like a weight lifted off my shoulders.”
In January, the girls created history as the first conjoined twins to be surgically separated at Cook Children’s hospital. The remarkable feat was achieved through the expertise of a neonatologist and a team of 25 skilled medical professionals, including six surgeons, who dedicated 11 hours to the intricate surgery.
Twins, JamieLynn and AmieLynn, were conjoined at the chest and shared a liver.
Nearly two months after her separation, on March 21, Jamie was released from the NICU at Cook Children’s Hospital.
The Finleys were very happy when Jamie was released from the hospital and could go home to her parents, Amanda and James, and three older siblings.
“We’ve been looking forward to this for a long time,” said the girls’ doctor, Mary Frances Lynch, M.D., a neonatologist at Cook Children’s.
However, while the five-month-old Jamie was able to go home, her twin sister, Amie, must stay in Cook Children’s NICU for a few weeks.
Amie has had a tougher go of it and is recuperating after surgery that improved the incision in her chest and provided more room for her lungs, heart, and diaphragm.
“There were some moments that were scary,” James said.
The twins will be separated until Amie returns home, which is anticipated to happen in about a month.
Since Jamie’s separation surgery, she has fully recovered and is now bouncing and interacting with anyone.
To aid in her eating and continued growth, she returns home with a gastrostomy tube (G-tube), but everything suggests that she is doing well and healthy.
“We’re excited that we get her home,” James said, adding that they are happy they will spend more quality time with Jamie, but referred the situation to a double-edged sword as Amie must stay in the hospital.
“We’re happy Jamie is coming home, but they won’t be together for a bit.”
Jamie and Amie rode in their red wagon down the NICU hallways with their mother, Amanda, on Tuesday morning while they lay side by side.
James greeted the girls with a smile while saying, “Hi, sugar pudding.”
The twins grow up so fast, and their mother says Jamie is about to start rolling over. Meanwhile, Amie responded to her father’s greeting and said “hello,” and the girls did their bests to talk to their parents.
Amanda jokingly said Jamie would miss all the care their neonatologist, the NICU nurses, and medical staff provide her.
Amanda can hardly wait to take her two daughters home and rock them in their new chairs.
In addition to the neighbors of Amanda and James, the girls have a whole host of new friends eager to meet them.
The girls’ new nursery will be filled with loving care and attention from their three older siblings, family, and friends.
“Everybody is ready to see them,” James said
Dr. Jose Iglesias, the medical director of pediatric surgery at Cook Children’s Medical Center and a leading surgeon in the twins’ separation procedure, says that only a tiny percentage of conjoined twins make it past birth, Good Morning America noted.
“Conjoined twins that reach and stay viable after birth, at least for the first few days, there’s only about five or eight of those on the entire planet,” he said. “So it is a very rare situation.”
Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia has performed over two dozen successful separation procedures on conjoined twins and reports that the incidence of conjoined twin births is roughly 1 in 50,000 to 60,000.
James claimed that he and Amanda were aware of the bleak prognosis for their girls. He said that seeing them through to the procedure was scary.
“It was very scary and emotional, but you’ve got just to keep going and get through it,” Finley said, claiming that it was a scary journey as they didn’t know what would happen.
Thanks to technology, extensive studies, research, the capable hands of the twin’s neonatologist, medical professionals, surgeons, and the powerful prayers from everyone who loves them, JamieLynn and AmieLynn were able to make it through the operation.
Iglesias described the sisters’ future: “They’re going to grow up like the little girls they’re meant to be, independent and feisty like they’ve already shown us.”
Watch the twin’s inspiring video below: