Saturday, 14 October 2017

First Robotic Spinal Surgery in France Helps Little Boy with Severe Scoliosis Sit Up Straight

If you thought an autonomous robot dentist implanting 3D printed teeth into a patient’s mouth was astoundingly innovative and maybe a little scary, buckle your seat belt – for the first time, a robot has completed spinal surgery on a child with severe progressive scoliosis. The groundbreaking surgery took place at the University Hospital of Amiens (CHU d’Amiens) in France.
6-year-old Louis is handicapped with a genetic disorder known as infantile spinal amyotrophy – his back was bent at an extreme angle, which has caused him some breathing trouble. Rehabilitation, back braces, and orthopedic corsets were not helping, and he has spent the last six months lying flat in bed.

A robot named ROSA was tasked with completing a very important part of the obviously necessary surgery: the installation of ilio-sacral screws into the patient’s spine.

“It was a question of placing illio-sacral screws and hooks at the top of the back, connected by arched rods to straighten the back,” explained Professor Richard Gouron, the patient’s head of surgery. “The installation of the screws seven millimeters in diameter in a bone corridor of eight millimeters near the roots nervous system remains very complex and rare, they are voluminous in view of the small size of the child’s bones.”

Over the past year, Professor Gouron, pediatric orthopedic surgeon Dr. Fran├žois Deroussen, and neurosurgeon Dr. Michel Lefranc have been working tirelessly to simulate the robotic operation before it took place.
Dr. Lefranc said, “The surgeon plans the operation, the robot carries the instruments, and takes into account the movements of the patient. He brings the precision and three-dimensional vision.”
Thanks to 3D printing technology, a reproduction of the young patient’s spinal column was added to a mannequin for simulation purposes, so that the 15-person surgical team could practice ahead of time, and even simulate the entire operation twice before even attempting it on Louis.
“This is two firsts in one. A first in simulation, and a first surgery, the placement of ilio-sacral screws with the help of a robot,” explained Professor Gouron.”The incisions are smaller thanks to the robot, there is less post-operative pain and the patient can sit more quickly.”
We’ve seen studies that show 3D printed surgical models can save on costs, but more importantly, they can also reduce the amount of time patients have to spend on the operating table, because it gives surgeons the chance to practice complicated procedures ahead of time.
The successful surgery took place on September 28th, and it only took three hours to place screws in the pelvis and hooks at the top of the back, which were then connected by rods. Louis has recovered very well – not only can he breathe better, but he can also sit up correctly again.
Dr. Deroussen, who originally initiated the project, said, “This is a great victory.”
Due to the success of this first robotic spinal surgery, four other children will soon have identical surgeries to fix their spines.

Source : 3dPrint , 11 Oct 2017 

Flexpine Research Center, Specialized in Spinal Scoliosis, is Starting to Bloom in the Healthcare Innovation Park, Seoul National University Hospital Building in Bundang

Flexpine Orthosis is receiving spotlight as Flexpine Research Center which supplies customized medical devices relocated to Seoul National University Hospital in Bundang last year. Based on thorough research and studies mutually performed in the Healthcare Innovation Park at Seoul National University Hospital in Bundang, the Flexpine Orthosis is spotlighted as an alternative medical treatment for its minimized discomforts and effectiveness in treating scoliosis.
Located on the 4th floor of Healthcare Innovation Park at Seoul National University in Bundang, the Flexpine Orthosis Research Center is a healthcare center which utilizes detailed body measurement information and 3D printer to produce an accurately designed order based orthosis.
A percentage of patients being treated with conventional scoliosis orthosis complained for the discomforts when wearing the stiff braces. The patients to bend the upper body in order for adequate exercises, the conventional sedentary orthosis devices created certain discomforts when bending because the stiff devices are composed of hard plastic. Also, the sedentary devices hardly allowed for the patients to move, which means that the patients cannot simultaneously wear the device and perform spine adjustment exercises, which is an essential part of rehabilitation.
On the other hand, Flexpine Orthosis utilizes flexible and hard plastics for necessary parts along with elastic bands, which facilitates easy wearing and allows the patients to perform spine adjustment exercises simultaneously.
Flexpine Orthosis Research Center plans to export its products worldwide after going through patents and medical approvals.
Flexpine Research Center is a South Korean company which aims to make reasonably wearable medical devices with 3D printers. Flexpine Brace 0is light, wearable, and unshowing to others when seen outside. It can also be a genuinely helpful and effective brace who wants a comfortable device for scoliosis rehabilitating journey.
Flexpine Research Center offers an excellent experience for detailed body measurements, product trial and x-rays scans.

Source : Digital Journal , 12th Oct 2017 

A “magic” approach to scoliosis

Early detection and new treatment methods help doctors treat the spinal condition using magnets – and fewer surgeries. 

Some curves in life are great – the curve on a mountain road that leads to a great view, or curveballs from a star baseball pitcher – while other curves, like a spine that bends from side to side, can mean trouble for a growing body. And while some cases of scoliosis are congenital (meaning children are born with vertebral curves) or neuromuscular (stemming from cerebral palsy, spina bifida or other conditions), about 80 percent of scoliosis cases are idiopathic – doctor speak for “we don’t really know why it occurs” – and tend to develop during puberty.
According to Dr. Christina Sayama, pediatric neurosurgeon at OHSU Doernbecher Children’s Hospital, both parents and primary care physicians should be on the lookout for markers of this condition, which impacts up to 9 million Americans.
“Early detection is key to avoiding surgery or complications with the heart and lungs,” says Dr. Sayama.
Scoliosis tends to run in families, so be sure to speak to your pediatrician about any family history of spinal conditions, and watch for the development of uneven shoulders or hips, an unusual gait or a spine that curves to one side when a child bends over.
“Once scoliosis is suspected, the gold standard of diagnosis is an upright spinal X-ray – and anything greater than 10 degrees of curvature is considered scoliosis,” explains Dr. Sayama. “Up to 20 degrees is considered mild; between 20 and 40 degrees, many neurosurgeons and orthopaedic doctors will recommend using a brace; and I will recommend surgery for a curve greater than 45 degrees.”
For growing bodies with mild scoliosis, Dr. Sayama often recommends physical therapy and core strengthening in addition to the proven strategy of wearing a brace.
“The longer a child wears the brace every day, the more likely they are to succeed in keeping the curve from progressing and needing surgery,” she explains.

And what about when surgery is necessary? In the past, a severe scoliosis diagnosis meant multiple surgeries – every 6-9 months – to lengthen growing rods that guided the spine into a healthier position. Thankfully, a new treatment is drastically reducing the number of surgeries necessary for little ones. Called the Magec Growing Rod System, the technique requires an initial surgery to implant temporary growth rods that can be lengthened by magnets from outside the body until a child reaches skeletal maturity. That means less time in the hospital, and more time practicing those curveballs

Source : OHSU , 9th Oct 2017 

Delhi doctors perform successful spinal deformity correction surgery on 21-month-old

The four-hour-long deformity correction surgery is a new kind of success for the doctors.

Delhi doctors perform successful spinal deformity correction surgery on 21-month-old
Representational Image !

A team of doctors at the Indian Spinal Injuries Centre (ISIC) in Delhi performed a complex, albeit successful surgery upon a 21-month-old boy suffering from kyphotic deformity. Also known as spinal cord deformity, it leads to an excessive outside curvature of the spine which causes hunching. The doctors explained that generally, upper back spine is normally curved outwards to a certain degree which in medical terms is called "kyphosis" or the "kyphotic" curve. The four-hour-long deformity correction surgery is a new kind of success for the doctors. "We conducted MRI which revealed that there was destruction of back bones due to tuberculosis, which caused severe deformity and spinal cord compression leading to weakness in the legs," said Gururaj Sangondimath, Consultant Spine Surgery, Indian Spinal Injuries Centre (ISIC), in a statement. The normal curvature of neck and lower back bends the spine inward. These outward and inward curves of the spine help the spine to bear the load of a person with less energy consumption. Abnormal curvature is known as kyphotic deformity. In this case, the boy had a curvature of 110 degrees, whereas normal curvature is up to 40 to 45 degrees. For the team of doctors treating the patient, the procedure was not without challenges, the doctor pointed out. The boy's deformity was corrected by reducing the curvature to 40 degrees from 110 degrees. "This was a highly challenging case of kyphosis, especially due to the age of the patient. It is for the first time in India that such a young child has successfully undergone a spinal deformity correction," Sangondimath said.

Source : Zee News , 10th Oct 2017

Sunday, 8 October 2017

Teenage girl wears 'Made in Wales, Modified in Germany' t-shirt after life-changing operation to straighten her spine

Emiah Ellis was previously diagnosed with scoliosis, which causes the spine to twist and curve to the side


Emiah Ellis is now recovering at home in the UK after the surgery

A teenage girl who underwent a life-changing operation thanks to generous strangers is proudly showing off the outcome.
Emiah Ellis, 14, wore a t-shirt reading 'Made in Wales, Modified in Germany' after the successful procedure to straighten her spine.
The teen was previously diagnosed with scoliosis, which causes the spine to twist and curve to the side, and usually starts in children aged 10-15.
She was unable to undergo the costly operation in Germany after a fundraising effort collected £30,000.
Surgeons had to deflate her lung before inserting six screws into her spine and tugging on a thread which pulled it in straight, her mum told WalesOnline.

Emiah, 14, shows off her t-shirt with Dr Per Trobisch 

Emiah, of Brynna, South Wales, is now recovering at home after returning from Germany.
Her mum Menna Garland-Ellis said the problem started when Emiah, who has always been very sporty, started getting hurt after practice on a regular basis.
She said: “Two years ago she was in a swimming squad and into athletics, doing a lot of training, and every time she was coming home, she was complaining about a bad shoulder thinking she’d pulled a muscle.
“I took her to a physio, thinking you can’t pull a muscle every time, there must be something else going on. The physio said if you look, her shoulders aren’t in alignment and she had to be referred to hospital.
“They told us she had scoliosis of the spine.”
Emiah was then faced with a choice – have an operation that could potentially restrict her movement or do nothing and stay in pain.

She opted for vertebral body tethering (VBT), also known as fusionless surgery, which preserves flexibilty and growth by not stiffening the spine.
The operation at the Eifelklinik clinic in Simmerath last month used nuts and bolts instead of rods.
To cover the cost, the family raised £30,000, with donations coming from relatives, friends and the community.
Menna said: “We were going down the route of having an operation where they put rods in your back but her curve is very low down, so they said it could affect her movement."
She said of the operation in Germany: “Instead of using rods, they don’t operate from the back, they operate from the sides and made two slits on her side, deflated her lung and inserted six screws placed on her spine and pull a thread through the nuts and bolts and when they pull it tighter, it pulls the spine in straight.

“But what that means is she can still bend, she’s still got her flexibilty.”
Now Emiah is back at home and has stunned the doctors with her impressive recovery.

Her mum said: “She was really positive. They kept commenting how brave and determined she was. She was walking up the stairs on the third day after her operation. They said they’ve never had somebody do so much so quick.
“She can’t do anything now while she’s healing and we have to wait for the scars to heal before she can go back to swimming. But she should be able to continue. It’s going to take a while to build up to the same levels she was at before, but she’s done really well.
“We had to raise a lot of money and this is a great help. It’s early days, but the operation will hopefully mean Emiah will keep her flexibility and live a normal everyday life.”

Source : Mirror UK , 25th Sep 2017 

Umno Welfare Bureau undertakes to pay for operation of 15-year-old with C-shaped spine : Malaysia

 Fifteen-year-old Nur Humaira Shakirin who suffers from severe scoliosis (spinal deformation) can look forward to a brighter future after the Umno Welfare Bureau came to her aid.
Unlike some teenagers who have a S-shaped spine, Nur Humaira’s spine was C-shaped.
Her parents noticed her deformity in December 2016 after she complained of back pain.
“I used to be an active person and enjoyed playing netball, especially as the goal attacker. I was an active sportswoman in school.
“But ever since I was diagnosed with severe scoliosis, my parents have stopped me from playing over concerns that it will worsen my condition.
“I want to enjoy playing games but I can only watch my friends play during physical education lessons,” the form three student from SMK Datuk Bendahara told reporters here.
Nur Humaira was present with her parents at the Melaka Umno Office in Jalan Hang Tuah here to receive aid from the Malaysia Umno Welfare Bureau.
Nur Humaira’s mother, Mazlina Abdul Majid, 45, said her daughter’s condition worsened after the spine curved more than 60 degrees although it was 45 degrees earlier this year.
“She was not born with spinal deformity, so we did not suspect anything amiss when she had fever in December 2015.
“But a year later, she complained of back pain very often, and told me that she could feel something protruding from the back,” she said.
Nur Humaira was taken to the Jasin Hospital before she was referred to the Hospital Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia (HUKM).
“The X-ray results were shocking as we did not expect her spine to curve this way.
“The doctor advised an immediate surgery or else it may affect her heart and lungs,” she said.

Nur Humaira was present with her parents at the Melaka Umno Office in Jalan Hang Tuah here to receive aid from the Malaysia Umno Welfare Bureau. 
Today Nur Humaira was given a second chance to be active in sports again, thanks to the Malaysia Umno Welfare Bureau here.
She was given RM30,000 to purchase equipment as well assurance that the cost of surgery, medical expenses and accommodation would be covered.
Nur Humaira’s father, Shamsudin bin Mat Cha, 48, who received the cheque from Umno Welfare Bureau chairman, Datuk Dr Shamsul Anuar Nasarah, said he was thankful for the aid.
“I am only working at the Jasin Municipal Council with a montly salary of RM1,500. My wife and I have calculated that the total cost would be RM150,000.
“We are grateful for the aid given by the Umno Welfare Bureau. My wife is a housewife while my eldest son has yet to find a job."
Meanwhile, Shamsul expressed hope that the aid would help ease the family's financial burden.
“I hope Nur Humairi can focus on her studies as the Form Three Assesment (PT3) examination is around the corner as we have assured her that she will be able to go for the surgery on Oct 21,” he said.

Source : New Strait Times , 27th Sep 2017 

Michaela Jacobs is reigning Miss Florida 2017, she is past Miss Teen USA 2016, and as of this year, a member of Elon's class of 2021.

Screen Shot 2017-09-29 at 3.10.46 PM
With such big accomplishments in the pageantry world, it may seem like Jacobs is experienced in participating in beauty pageants. However, this is not the case. Jacobs first entered a beauty pageant on a whim at seventeen and proceeded to win on a national level.
Jacobs still describes the event as a surreal moment.
“There is that initial moment where you are like ‘OMG,’ is this me?’” Jacobs said. “Did this really just happen? Just utter elation. And sheer joy. I still can’t believe it.”
At her first pageant, when Jacobs became the Miss Teen USA 2016, her career as a beauty pageant queen started. She traveled across the United States, where she met other important figures in the pageantry world. From there Jacobs added to her growing resume the title of Miss Florida 2017, which she still holds.
Jacobs says the pageantry world changed her life for the better.
“I was so pleasantly surprised,” Jacobs said. “It really has shaped my path, who I am and the choices that I’ve made. I am just so honored to be involved in a community of women who are so driven, so passionate and so committed to their platform topics -- whatever they may be.”
Jacobs acts as an ambassador for beauty pageant queens across the United States, and platform topics is one of the requirements of being a pageant contestant. Platform topics are causes that contestants choose to stand for and represent while competing.Throughout her years competing, Jacobs has represented two causes, one of which being The Crown Cares. The Crown Cares, or otherwise known as Creating A Respectful Environment in School, is specifically designed to promote awareness about bullying in schools in students of every grade. Through social clubs, anti-bullying books, and various craft activities, Jacobs says there is so much more to being a beauty queen than meets the eye; it’s about being a role model.
“I like to say there are ‘trials and triumphs’ and I know that defines my story. I’ve had so many trials in my life leading up to this point,” Jacobs said. “That the triumph that I have to now hold the title of Miss Florida and to encourage young girls who are going through trials of their own, that there’s hope for them.”
Jacobs has faced many trials throughout her life including scoliosis. She was first diagnosed during her freshman year of high school, and was told to not dance during the talent competitions.
“When I was diagnosed I was initially told that I shouldn’t dance, that it wasn’t healthy for me, that it wasn’t recommended,” Jacobs said. “But it was my passion and how could I walk away from that?” 
Instead, Jacobs uses her scoliosis as her strength, using it to connect with children who also live with the condition. She is an ambassador of Scoliosis Awareness and uses her position as a beauty pageant queen to gain more awareness for the cause. For Jacobs, the point of being a beauty pageant queen is so she can help encourage little girls all over the country.
“Now I can encourage other girls who are facing issues of their own whether it is with a health issue like scoliosis, a mental issue that they are facing, or whatever it might be, that there is hope for them and that they can overcome it,”  Jacobs said. “They can be the best versions of themselves too.”
However, being a beauty pageant queen isn’t just about bettering others, but also herself. Jacobs suffered from insecurity through her middle school and high school years, and being a beauty pageant queen gave her the confidence boost she needed to hold her head up high.
“It really just taught me that the only thing holding me back is myself. That my fears can’t stifle my passions,” Jacobs said. “And once I was able to overcome those and then win that national title, the sky was truly the limit.”
For now, Jacobs has decided to take a short break from the pageant world to focus on her education in Musical Theatre at Elon University. Elon currently has one of the most prestigious Musical Theatre Programs in the country with over 800 applicants applying and only 20 accepted. As a member of this elite group, Jacobs says she is happy to be here, but will not forget her pageant roots as it is a part of her now.

Source : Elon News Network , 29th Sep 2017