Twins take part in rare medical procedure

A pair of Kentuckiana twins, one battling breast cancer, the other by her sister's side with the help she needs.

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WHAS11) -- Cheryl Adair underwent chemo and radiation treatments three times due to her battle with breast cancer, which left the right half of her chest deformed from scars. With the hopes of having her breast re-built, Adair's twin stepped in to help.

 

The technique to reconstruct a woman's breast from a patient’s own stomach is common, but using a twin's stomach skin and fat to create a breast for their sibling has only happened five other times around the world.

 

"I said I can't believe this, that I finally have a chance to help you and possibly keep you cancer free," Cherona Craig said. It was a no-brainer for her after watching helplessly as her sister fought breast cancer three different times.

 

Those fights left the right side of Adair’s chest deformed from scars and radiation. Then the conversation came about for a special flap breast reconstruction, which took place on Halloween. Transplanted skin and fat was taken from Craig's abdomen to create a new breast for Adair, giving her back volume and shape to her breast. 

 

"This situation provided very nice skin to make a breast and more tissue there to make a breast as well,” Dr. Michelle Palazzo with Kleinert Kutz Hand Care Center said.

 

Craig states proudly, "If there was anything that I could've done, I probably would've done it to help her."  

 

The hope is by removing Adair's diseased skin it lessens the chances that her breast cancer will return.

 

"I thought it was special for one that she got to help me and I knew that she was thrilled about that,” Adair said.

 

This is bond few will ever understand, to go from watching your sister in pain only from the sideline to being on the operating table providing a renewed sense of normalcy. 

 

This story serves as a great example as to why it's so important to talk to your doctors. There are other options for breast reconstruction even without a twin.

© 2017 WHAS-TV


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