A two-year-old girl with eight limbs is undergoing an over 40-hour long operation since Tuesday morning in Bangalore for the rectification of the defect by birth due to the headless conjoined twin.
Laxmi was born in a poor family in a small village in Bihar's Araria District.
Villagers initially considered her as an incarnation of Goddess Laxmi, but after sometime they realised that she is unwell.
Laxmi's parents, who could not afford the expensive surgery, received help from Sharan Patil, a doctor in Bangalore, who agreed to operate on her free of cost.
Laxmi is a case of an Ischiopagus Tetrapus conjoined twin joined at the pelvis, thus having eight limbs.
The doctor says the head of the other twin is missing, which makes it only a parasite.
Doctors faced the challenge of removing the parasite from Laxmi's body, which could become even more complicated as she grows up.
"Unfortunately, we do not have a choice of waiting for the child to grow older. The problem will become even more difficult to solve," Patil said, adding: "The child's nourishment is becoming a problem and it is difficult for the child to nourish this parasite, which is pretty huge."
The operation is expected to take a maximum of 48 hours and the doctors have prepared themselves for the ordeal.
"We do have long operations, but this is going to be extra long. We have geared ourselves up," said Dr. Patil.
A team of 36 doctors, including 16 specialists, began the operation on Tuesday morning.
Well aware that the operation has a 25 percent risk factor, and also that of losing Laxmi's life, her parents find a solace that they are able to make the best possible treatment available to their child.
"They are keen that their child goes through the surgery. They fully appreciate that here is the risk of 25 per cent, maybe of losing Lakshmi. Not a nice thing to say, but that huge worry is in our mind as well as much as in the parents' mind," said Dr. Patil.
"But, only way is to do our best and achieve the best for Laxmi," Dr.Patil added.