A man who was born with three testicles had a very unpleasant surprise after getting his extra testicle removed last week: he learned that the presumed gland was, in fact, his dead and undeveloped conjoined twin.
51-year old James Wong, from Eugene in Oregon, underwent an orchiectomy last Thursday, a surgery meant to remove his third testicle, which represented a risk of producing excess testosterone and causing health issues.
Less than a week later, he received a call from the hospital telling him that the biopsy had revealed that his testicle wasn’t what it seemed.
“They told me it had a tiny heart, a tiny brain, and everything else. I thought I just had three balls but I was, in fact, a Siamese twin!”
Mr. Wong says he was surprised by the news, but that he was somehow aware of his brother’s presence.
“In a way, I always knew I had someone by my side all the time. I think I always unconsciously turned to him when I didn’t have the balls to face my life.”
This isn’t the first time that people live several years as individuals before learning they were conjoined twins.
Four other cases have been recorded in the U.S. alone over the last twenty years and over 20 others across the globe, but all other cases involve people living less than 7 years without knowledge of their condition.
Mr. Wong’s case, therefore, stands out due to the age at which he learned about the existence of his twin.
The unusual shape and location of his twin brother have also contributed to drawing a lot of attention and mockery on social media, making his story more public than most similar cases.