Exclusive Interview: Father of Conjoined Lubbock Twins Talks Upcoming Surgery
John Eric and Elysse Mata of Lubbock, Texas went to their first ultrasound expecting to find out if they had a boy or a girl on the way. Instead, they learned that Elysse was pregnant with twin girls who were conjoined at the chest.
Mata called in to Lonestar 99.5 today and talked about his initial reaction to the news his wife was pregnant with conjoined twins, and what doctors have planned for his daughters.
The Matas had went to their first ultrasound hoping to find out if they had a boy or a girl on the way. Instead, they learned them that they were having twin girls who were conjoined at the chest.
"I was hoping for a boy as any guy would," Mata explained.
However, during his wife's ultrasound, the couple learned not only would they not be having a boy, but they were having conjoined twin girls.
"The ultrasound tech, she's looking, looking, and gets a blank look on her face," he recalled. "Well as soon as she does that my wife looks over at me like she just seen a ghost, and said, 'hey, that's not good.'"
Mata's wife was worried that there was no heartbeat or that something serious was wrong.
"Sure enough, the doctor came in and she told us there seemed to be two heartbeats, and the babies looked like they are conjoined," said Mata.
Mata's first instinct was what anybody would do: pull out their cell phone and Google it.
The doctor referred the Matas to the Texas Children's Hospital in Houston, where the couple are currently living and awaiting the surgery to separate the twin girls.
Amazingly, doctors placed their chance of survival at 20 percent, but today, Knatalye Hope and Adeline Faith are a healthier six lbs. each.
The surgery will require the doctors to put in tissue expanders, which will stretch the skin. Then, six to eight weeks, later they can be separated. The girls will have a long road of rehabilitation, but will eventually learn to balance on their own, crawl and walk.
Mata's sister has set up a page to help the family with donations toward covering the medical costs, a custom-made car seat and other necessary items. If you're interested in donating, the link is below.
Here's praying for a successful surgery and rehabilitation for The Mata Twins.