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Case report
Sirenomelia (mermaid syndrome): a rare congenital disorder
  1. Muhammad Imran Riazat1,
  2. Bharti Kewlani2,
  3. Jamaleddin Abujennah1 and
  4. Farhana Sharif1,2
  1. 1 Paediatrics Department, Mullingar Regional Hospital, Mullingar, Ireland
  2. 2 School of Medicine, Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland, Dublin, Ireland
  1. Correspondence to Dr Muhammad Imran Riazat; imranriazatpk{at}


Sirenomelia, also known as mermaid syndrome, is an extremely rare congenital disorder involving the lower spine and lower limbs. We present a case of a grand multiparous with poorly controlled gestational diabetes who delivered a live baby weighing 2.43 kg at 38 weeks’ gestation. The baby was noted to have significant respiratory distress, and resuscitation was promptly commenced. Severe congenital abnormalities indicative of sirenomelia were obvious and after availability of antenatal records which indicated an extremely poor prognosis, resuscitative efforts were aborted. The baby was handed over to the mother for comfort care and died 18 min postdelivery.

  • neonatal and paediatric intensive care
  • neonatal health
  • materno-fetal medicine
  • congenital disorders
  • genetic screening / counselling

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  • MIR and BK contributed equally.

  • Contributors MIR is the main contributor in this case report. He is responsible for taking consent from the mother, briefing the mother about the patient’s condition and to use information for publication and study purpose. BK contributed by providing the research references for the discussion piece, after discussing with MIR and FS. FS supervised and proofread the case report. JA was the consultant present at the time of incidence and was responsible for suggesting that this case be reported.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Patient consent for publication Parental/guardian consent obtained.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

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