Formerly conjoined twins Erika and Eva Sandoval are ready for the next step in their healing. The 2½-year-old sisters left Lucile Packard Children's Hospital Stanford yesterday for UC Davis Children's Hospital, where they're expected to stay for a few weeks before returning to home to Antelope, California. The move allows the girls to continue receiving physical and occupational therapy in a location closer to home.
Erika and Eva were born at Packard Children's in 2014. Before their Dec. 6 separation, they shared much of their bodies from the diaphragm down. Today, each girl has one leg, and much of their recovery is now focused on helping them gain more independence and mobility.
On March 6, their Stanford caregivers threw a princess-themed farewell party for the girls and their parents, Aida and Art Sandoval. The guests of honor wore tiaras and enjoyed cupcakes and strawberries while everyone took a lot of celebratory photos. (The picture above shows Eva in purple and Erika in red.)
In total, more than 100 hospital caregivers have spent thousands of hours with the girls since they were born, and everyone is excited by how far they've come. A blog post from Packard Children's explains:
'Erika and Eva look really great,' said pediatric surgeon Gary Hartman, MD, [who] led the 50-person team that separated the twins in a 17-hour operation and has closely monitored their recovery. 'The girls have just blossomed in terms of personality,' he said. 'They’re very engaging and chatty.'
Their parents are also thrilled. As Aida put it, "Now we’re just waiting for their next chapter to begin, and the anticipation is indescribable."
Previously: Conjoined twins update: Erika and Eva Sandoval healing well, From one, to two: The separation of the conjoined Sandoval twins, in photos and Conjoined twins successfully separated at Lucile Packard Children's Hospital Stanford
Photo courtesy of Lucile Packard Children's Hospital Stanford