KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- A Kansas City woman gave birth to rare mono mono twins this week. If that term sounds familiar, it's probably because of twins who were an internet sensation back in May. A photo from Ohio captured hearts around the world. It showed twin girls holding hands right after birth on Mother's Day. The twins shared not only a placenta but also an amniotic sac. They are so-called mono mono or mono amniotic twins.
Cherylin Sherman of Kansas City knows there's so much more about mono mono twins that the photo didn't reveal.
"Once they started telling me all the risks and everything, I was just like, 'Oh, my gosh,'" said Sherman.
In June, at just 24 weeks along, Sherman went into Truman Medical Center because she was expecting mono mono twins. Since mono mono twins share an amniotic sac, their umbilical cords can become tightly entangled.
"Where they could cut off blood flow to one or both of the babies and potentially, the baby could die," said Dr. Timothy Bennett of Children's Mercy Hospital.
It was possible one baby wouldn't get enough nutrition, too. The death rate with mono mono twins is 15 to 20 percent.
This week, after more than two and a half months in the hospital, Sherman's twins, Arabella and Annabeth, arrived. Their heart rates had dropped in the womb, so Sherman was transferred to Children's Mercy where the babies were delivered by c-section at 34 weeks.
"Just seemed so surreal and I was just so happy," said Sherman.
She says there was a tense moment when Arabella stopped breathing. She still needs some breathing assistance. Both babies remain in intensive care. Even though they didn't hold hands at birth as the Ohio twins did, their mother thinks they will be very close.
"I feel like they're going to have a really good bond," Sherman said.
She thinks they'll have a rare closeness that started in the womb.
Arabella was born with a heart defect and will need surgery soon. Sherman was unable to be a wage earner for months while in the hospital. The family has a GoFundMe page that allows people to help with finances. For more, visit gofundme.com/aa2m34.