Most of the news about Ben Carson lately has involved the words “Muslim” and “unconstitutional,” or reality show stars calling him a “pretty good doctor.” However before Dr. Ben Carson gave speeches to conservatives, he was the top pediatric neurosurgeon in the world.
And when we say top in the world, we mean in a the-first-person-to-ever-seperate-conjoined-twins kind of way. Yes, for real. Meet Patrick and Benjamin Binder.
The Binders are twins from Ulm, Germany, who were seven months old when they underwent surgery to be separated. Conjoined twins who are typically attached at the skull — or craniopagus twins — rarely survive past their second birthday, thus the surgery was a chance for Patrick and Benjamin to have longer and healthier lives. There was incredible risk to performing the operation, as the twins shared a critical vein in their brains: the sagittal superior sinus, which drains blood from the brain as well as cerebrospinal fluid. Carson and a team of 70 Johns Hopkins Hospital medical professionals worked for 22 hours straight to complete the operation.
It’s during that operation that Carson began perfecting the technique slowing down patients’ bodies to prevent additional medical complications and make it easier to separate shared veins. The twins’ blood was drained, their hearts stopped, and functionality of their brains limited. By allowing little, if any, blood to course through either twin, the risk of fatal blood loss was slightly reduced. The lengthy surgery was still a bit of a gamble and ended with Carson and his team electing not to reconstruct each child’s new skull. Miraculously, the twins survived and have been living independently despite brain damage associated with the operation. They have since undergone a considerable amount of procedures and are said to be “neurologically normal,” according to The Des Moines Register.
Dr. Ben Carson is effectively the polar opposite of Obama. Here we have a black American, who accomplished incredible things in the private sector, who speaks in measured tones, devoid of rhetoric, communicating the positive ideas of American exceptionalism and unity.