Virtopsy in conjoined ischiopagus twins

M. P. Biso, P. Sala, V. G. Vellone, G. Minetti, C. R. Gaggero, M. Foppiano, E. Fulcheri, P. De Biasio

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose of investigation: To propose a multidisciplinary protocol for postmortem disclosure of complex fetal malformations, comparing ultrasound, computed tomography (CT), magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), and autopsy in a case of conjoined ischiopagus twins. Materials and Methods: A screening second-Trimester ultrasound diagnosed ischiopagus twins at 20 gestational weeks in a 31 - year-old woman without any previous ultrasound examination. The couple decided for pregnancy termination. The formalin-fixed fetuses underwent full-body CT, MRI, and autopsy. Results: ultrasound accurately diagnosed ischiopagus twins. CT was very accurate in the description of bone components. MRI allowed better visualization of the visceral organs than CT. Only autopsy could disclose the aspect of the two gastrointestinal tracts and the external genitalia. Conclusions: Prenatal ultrasound represents the standard diagnostic exam for conjoined twins. CT-MRI virtual autopsy (virtopsy) may be an option if the couple refuses to authorize necropsy or may be useful to plan a minimally invasive autopsy preserving the external phcnotypc.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)288-291
Number of pages4
JournalClinical and Experimental Obstetrics and Gynecology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Jan 1 2017


  • Autopsy
  • Computed tomography
  • Conjoined twins
  • Magnetic resonance imaging
  • Ultrasound
  • Virtopsy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Reproductive Medicine
  • Obstetrics and Gynaecology


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