Physician Jan Bondeson, author of such excellent books as Buried Alive and A Cabinet of Medical Curiosities, wrote an overview for Fortean Times about "two-headed babies" of the past and present.
The sad story of the ‘Two-Headed Baby’ (born in the Dominican Republic in 2003) was a five-day wonder all over the world. From Maine to Mexico and from Stockholm to Sydney, newspapers gave their views on this singular event. Some papers tried their best to present a factual account, although struggling hard to understand the medical facts, while others painted a gory and sensational picture of the brave little girl and the horrific operation she was to undergo. Without exception, the press coverage was ill-informed, indicative of the failure of modern ‘medical journalism’ in which the reporters appear to understand very little of what they are writing about. In this unfortunate situation, they have a tendency to rely on dubious authorities, like a local ‘expert’ on conjoined twins who held a press conference after what must have been a very brief session reading up on his subject.Link
Following this dubious authority, the world’s press unanimously regurgitated the false information that although there had been some previous instances of this malformation, none of them had been live-born.
David Pescovitz is Boing Boing's co-editor/managing partner. He's also a research director at Institute for the Future. On Instagram, he's @pesco.