Sunday, 13 May 2018

Pretoria girl in need of urgent surgery

‘If a scoliosis repair is not done urgently, death is certain’.

A 16-year old East girl needs urgent surgery to correct her deformity or she would die, good Samaritan trying to raise funds for her has said.

Chanelle van der Merwe, a nurse, met scoliosis sufferer Bianca Fourie recently during her many hospital visits and was touched by her family’s plight.

The scoliosis had caused a 130° curvature by March “that it was impairing her lung capacity leading to breathing difficulty”.

“If repair is not done urgently, death is almost certain. She is already using supplement oxygen at home,” said Van der Merwe.

She would need to be hospitalised for two to three months during the corrective procedure, which would cost at least R 7 00 000.

She’s not on medical aid, and her parents have exhaust available resources already.”

Van der Merwe said the family needed urgent assistance to fund the procedure.

She said besides the deformity Bianca was an intelligent and healthy person who deserved a chance at life.

“She is such a vibrant and intelligent person, life can’t afford to lose her.”

Bianca Fourie

Bianca Fourie in hospital.

Bianca Fourie

Bianca Fourie

Bianca Fourie

Bianca Fourie with her brother Jaundre.


Saturday, 28 April 2018

SpineGuard® Announces First Spinal Deformity Surgery in China with PediGuard® by Prof. Yong Qiu

SpineGuard (FR0011464452 – ALSGD), an innovative company that develops and markets instruments designed to secure the placement of surgical implants by bringing real-time digital technology into the operating room, announced today that Professor Yong QIU performed the first spinal deformity surgery in China with the PediGuard® device.
Pr. Yong QIU is the Chairman of Orthopedic Surgery at Nanjing Drum Tower Hospital, President of the Chinese Scoliosis Research Society, and Vice-President of the Chinese Association of Orthopedic Surgeons and one of the leading scoliosis surgeons in China. His spine center is the largest scoliosis center in China, performing around 600 scoliosis surgeries per year, the majority of which are among the most complex cases in China.
This surgery case demonstrates the ability of XinRong Medical to quickly bring to market PediGuard enabled surgeries with the most preeminent surgeons in China, and highlights Xinrong’s ability to assist leading foreign brands in navigating the local tendering and hospital approval process.
“PediGuard increases safety for better screw placement, reduces surgical time by 15%, decreases X-ray exposure for patients, surgeons and staff and also helps train the young surgeons. It is a very useful and convenient device that is effective without any other supplementary equipment for complex spine surgery, especially for spinal deformity cases,” said Professor Yong Qiu, Chairman of Orthopedic Surgery of Nanjing Drum Tower Hospital.
“It is an immense honor for SpineGuard that Professor Yong Qiu performed the first spinal deformity surgery in China with the PediGuard device to secure pedicle screw placement. Professor Yong Qiu, who was trained in France, is the most experienced surgeon for spinal deformity in China with over 3,000 spinal deformity surgeries to his credit,” added Patricia Lempereur, International Director of Sales and Marketing at SpineGuard.
“We are honored by the use of PediGuard for spinal deformity cases at the Nanjing Drum Tower Hospital, one of the world most famous hospitals for spinal deformity with over 9,000 cases since their opening. We look forward to extending our collaboration with Pr. Yong Qiu with the use of PediGuard technology in training junior surgeons in China for pedicular screw placementChina market is growing rapidly, with spine surgery cases expected to grow around in the mid double digits in next 5 years. XinRong covers 2600 hospitals in China. We have great confidence that with the wide application PediGuard by Chinese surgeons will continue to dramatically enhance surgery case outcomes,” concluded Christine Zhang, XinRong Medical Group’s CEO.
The event was also reported by Chinese television news program, watch here.
More information on the DSG® technology and surgeons’ testimonials here.
Next financial press release: 2018 Half-year revenue: July 11, 2018
About SpineGuard®
Founded in 2009 in France and the USA by Pierre Jérôme and Stéphane Bette, SpineGuard’s mission is to make spine surgery safer by bringing real-time digital technology into the operating room. Its primary objective is to establish its proprietary DSG™ (Dynamic Surgical Guidance) technology as the global standard of surgical care, starting with safer screw placement in spine surgery and then in other surgeries. PediGuard®, the first device designed using DSG, was co-invented by Maurice Bourlion, Ph.D., Ciaran Bolger, M.D., Ph.D., and Alain Vanquaethem, Biomedical Engineer. It is the world’s first and only handheld device capable of alerting surgeons to potential pedicular or vertebral breaches. Over 60,000 surgical procedures have been performed worldwide with DSG™ enabled devices. Numerous studies published in peer-reviewed medical and scientific journals have demonstrated the multiple benefits that PediGuard® delivers to patients, surgical staff and hospitals. SpineGuard is expanding the scope of its DSG™ platform through strategic partnerships with innovative medical device companies and the development of smart instruments and implants. SpineGuard has offices in San Francisco and Paris. For further information, visit www.spineguard.com.
About XinRong Medical Group
XinRong Medical Group, a leader in medical technology, is dedicated to increasing patient affordability and providing the most advanced solutions for surgeons such that they can deliver the best patient care. XinRong Medical offers innovative solutions in orthopedic surgery, neurosurgery, reconstructive surgery, and minimally invasive therapy. Established in 2000 in Jiangsu Province, China, XinRong Medical was one of the first companies in China cleared by CFDA to manufacture Orthopedic Implants. In 2014, the Company received a strategic investment from The Blackstone Group (NYSE: BX). For additional information about XinRong Medical, please refer to our website www.XRBest.Com, or contact us directly at +86-512-58100828 or info@xrmed.com.
The SpineGuard securities may not be offered or sold in the United States as they have not been and will not be registered under the Securities Act or any United States state securities laws, and SpineGuard does not intend to make a public offer of its securities in the United States. This is an announcement and not a prospectus, and the information contained herein does and shall not constitute an offer to sell or the solicitation of an offer to buy, nor shall there be any sale of the securities referred to herein in the United States in which such offer, solicitation or sale would be unlawful prior to registration or exemption from registration.


Stéphane Bette
Chief Executive Officer
Tel: +33 (0)1 45 18 45 19
Manuel Lanfossi
Chief Financial Officer
Europe / NewCap
Investor Relations & Financial Communication
Mathilde Bohin / Pierre Laurent
Tel: +33 (0)1 44 71 94 94

Source : Business Wire , 18th April 2018 

Chinese, American doctors offer free surgeries to poor children

More than 100 medical experts from China and the United States are performing free surgeries for 60 children at a hospital in Nanjing, capital of Jiangsu Province.
Targeting children with congenital diseases or disabilities from poor families and orphanages, the medical charity program started last Friday and will run a week, according to the People's Hospital of Jiangsu Province.
This is the fourth year that Chinese and American medical experts have performed surgeries at the hospital under the program "Healing with Love," which was jointly launched by the Children of China Pediatrics Foundation and the hospital in 2015.
Yang Xinying has suffered from scoliosis, an abnormal curvature of the spine, from the age of five. As she grew, the disease became more serious, even causing difficulty in breathing.
Last year, the 13-year-old girl's spinal deformity was corrected by the medical team for free. Her teacher said before the surgery she was very shy, but now shows much more confidence and initiative at school.
Over the last three years, the program has offered treatment for over 200 children and more than 100 free surgeries have been performed.
"It helps connect outstanding medical experts from China and the United States, expanding the social impact of charity activities and benefiting more patients," said Zhao Jun, Party chief of the hospital. 

Source : XINHUANET , 17 April 2018 

Scoliosis won't stop this karate kid

You would never know Claire Banaszak has scoliosis when you watch her get her black belt in karate.

Doctors told her and her mother that she would need surgery that required a rod to go down her back due to a 38-degree curve in her thoracic spine and a 53-degree curve in her lumbar vertebrae.
The severity of the curvature would require between 60 and 70 percent of Claire's spine to be fused.
Refusing to see her daughter not doing what she loved most, her mother discovered a surgery that would allow her to keep moving.
"They use a flexible tether to straighten the spine instead of fusion and bone graphs to basically fuse the entire spine together," said Claire's mother, Michelle Banaszak. "So it is a wonderful thing that will work with her growing body."
Claire said she looks forward to continuing kicking it in karate.
"I was just so emotional about having this surgery because it would just stop everything I do," she said. "I'm a lot more stress free now."

There is a GoFundMe page called "Help Claire Stand Tall" to help pay for her surgery, because insurance will not cover it. For donation information, click on the link in the Related Links box.

For Video : http://www.newsplex.com/content/news/Scoliosis-doesnt-stop-this-karate-kid-480505391.html

Source : CBS19 News , 23 April 2018

Solving the Hunchback with a Robotic Exoskeleton

Researchers from Columbia University look to modernize the back brace with a dynamic robotic system in hopes of correct spinal deformities.

New research from Columbia University looks to solve the limitations in spinal curve correction treatment. Spine deformities are characterized by an abnormal curve in the spine. The medical terms for such conditions are idiopathic scoliosis or kyphosis, commonly referred to as being “hunchbacked.” These conditions affect children in development, and the common treatment for any spinal deformity is to wear a brace that fits around the torso and hips. The brace helps to correct the abnormal curve, and it been shown to prevent the progression of the curve to avoid future surgery.
The bracing used has not changed in 50 years, however. While it stops or slows down the progression of the curve, it imposes a number of limitations and restrictions on the children. The braces are rigid, static, and analog, meaning there are no feedback sensors or technology that can monitor the patient’s progress. Also, most braces are uncomfortable and can cause skin irritation from prolonged use. The braces also do not adapt well over time, resulting in diminished effect until a new brace is made for the patient—which can be costly.

To modernize the brace, Columbia Engineering researchers have invented a new Robotic Spine Exoskeleton (RoSE). RoSE looks to solve the limitations of current brace technology and hopefully lead to new treatments for spine deformities.
The Robotic Spine Exoskeleton (RoSE) consists of two six-degrees-of-freedom, parallel-actuated modules connected in series, each with six actuated limbs. (Image Credit: Sunil Agrawal/Columbia Engineering)

Designing of the RoSE

The RoSE is a dynamic spine brace that looks at in vivo measurements of torso stiffness and characterizes the three-dimensional stiffness of the human torso. The first study was published online March 30 in IEEE Transactions of Neural Systems and Rehabilitation Engineering.
“The RoSE is the first device to measure and modulate the position or forces in all six degrees of freedom in specific regions of the torso,” says the study’s principal investigator, Sunil Agrawal, professor of mechanical engineering at Columbia Engineering and professor of rehabilitation and regenerative medicine at Columbia University Vagelos College of Physicians and Surgeons. “This study is foundational and we believe will lead to exciting advances both in characterizing and treating spine deformities.
“To our knowledge, there are no other studies on dynamic braces like ours,” Agrawal continues. Prior to developing the RoSE technology, brace studies were performed on cadavers, which did not provide a complete dynamic picture.

This video describes the design and fabrication process used in creating the RoSE. (Image Credit: Sunil Agrawal/Columbia Engineering)
The RoSE was developed by Agrawal’s Robotics and Rehabilitation (ROAR) Laboratory and consists of three rings placed on the pelvis, mid-thoracic, and upper-thoracic regions of the spine. A six-degrees-of-freedom, parallel-actuated robot is used to control the motion of two adjacent rings.
The system has 12 degrees of freedom overall that is controlled by 12 motors. With the RoSE, researchers have the ability to control the motion of the upper rings with respect to the pelvis ring or apply controlled forces on these rings during the motion. The system design can also apply corrective forces in specific directions without restricting the free motion in other directions.

The RoSE First Case Study

In the first study conducted by the team, eight male subjects without spine deformities and two male subjects with spine deformities were selected. The purpose of the pilot study was to characterize the three-dimensional stiffness of their torsos. The RoSE controlled the position/orientation of specific cross sections of the subjects’ torsos while simultaneously measuring the exerted forces/moments.
Spinal abnormal curves are three-dimensional, meaning that the stiffness characteristics are curve-specific and depend on the locations of the curve apex on the human torso. The results from the study showed that the three-dimensional stiffness of the human torso can be characterized using the RoSE, and that the spine deformities induce torso stiffness characteristics that were significantly different from the healthy subjects.
Joon-Hyuk Park, who worked on this research as a Ph.D. student and a team member at Agrawal’s ROAR laboratory says that, “In order to characterize the three-dimensional stiffness of the human torso, the RoSE applies six unidirectional displacements in each DOF of the human torso, at two different levels, while simultaneously measuring the forces and moments.”
The image above is an illustration of the design and fabrication steps used in developing the RoSE. (Image Credit: Sunil Agrawal/Columbia Engineering)
 “Our results open up the possibility for designing spine braces that incorporate patient-specific torso stiffness characteristics,” adds the study’s co-principal investigator, David P. Roye, a spine surgeon and a professor of pediatric orthopedics at the Columbia University Irving Medical Center. “Our findings could also lead to new interventions using dynamic modulation of three-dimensional forces for spine deformity treatment.”
The next phase of study is to use the RoSE on female patients. In young females, idiopathic scoliosis is 10 times more common than males. “Directional difference in the stiffness of the spine may help predict which children can potentially benefit from bracing and avoid surgery,” says Agrawal.

Source : Machine Design , 25th April 2018 

The Important Lesson My Daughter Taught Me After She Was Diagnosed with Scoliosis

We had to brace ourselves.
The Important Lesson My Daughter Taught Me After She Was Diagnosed with Scoliosis

“Huh. I wasn’t expecting that,” the emergency-room physician said, frowning as he read the report from my daughter Genie’s chest X-ray. I shot a nervous glance at my pale, coughing 3-year-old.
“So she has pneumonia?” I asked.
“No, her lungs are clear—it’s just a cold. But there’s a note here saying that her spine is curved,” the doctor replied. I was glad Genie didn’t have pneumonia, but what did it mean that her spine was curved? I pictured a spine shaped like a question mark.
Once Genie was better, we visited an orthopedist our pediatrician had recommended. She diagnosed Genie with scoliosis, an abnormal, side-to-side spinal curvature. The curve stood at 18 degrees; if it progressed to 20 degrees, Genie would need to wear a back brace for 23 hours a day until sometime in her teens.
I prayed Genie’s curve would hold or improve. But a follow-up visit the next year brought devastating news: Her spine was now listing at 26 degrees. A brace-maker armed with a tape measure and clipboard was called in. Weeks later, we were presented with the hard, thick plastic shell that would encase my daughter’s torso for the next decade. 
You don’t mess with scoliosis. Left unchecked, it can cause profound problems, from visible deformity and chronic pain to heart and lung trouble. My husband and I knew we needed to treat Genie at once, but that didn’t make it any less agonizing to buckle our wiggly child into a bulky, inflexible contraption. And it wasn’t like I could tell her “lots of kids have this.” They don’t, especially not at age 4. In fact, Genie was the only child in our elementary school’s 100-plus-year history to wear a back brace to classes.
Genie’s clothing covered the brace, but the outline of its front buckles was clearly visible through her clothes. The shoulder straps jutted upward, making her look like a pint-sized linebacker. All I could think was that her new, slightly lumpy appearance was tantamount to social suicide.
But something surprising happened: Genie stayed happy-go-lucky, maybe because she was too young to feel self-conscious. She covered her brace in stickers and showed it off to her pals, acting like it was cool gear she was lucky to have. She took her brace in stride, and, following her lead, so did those around her.
The years marched on. There was the occasional mean girl at camp or insensitive adult, but for the most part, people either disregarded Genie’s brace or were intrigued by it. When a performer at a medieval fair selected Genie to ride on his shoulders, he discovered her brace as he lifted her. “She has her own armor!” he roared to the crowd. 
Meanwhile, Genie was disarming me—stripping away the guilty awkwardness I’d long felt around people with visible differences. Because she didn’t view her brace as tragic, she didn’t view others’ medical equipment—or they themselves—as objects of pity. She’d say breezy hellos to people in wheelchairs, and coo over babies in headgear.
Several years ago, she made a best friend at camp and told me everything about her—except that the girl had impaired mobility and used a walker. I didn’t learn about it until visiting day, when I witnessed Genie happily helping her pal get up a hill while singing to her. Why didn’t she tell me about the walker? I wondered. Then I realized it was because to her, it wasn’t worth a mention.
I started to see that it wasn’t just Genie’s spine that needed help; my attitude toward people with disabilities needed some straightening out, too. I no longer avert my gaze from them, worried that they’ll see sorrow in my eyes. Instead, like Genie, I make a point of saying hi. I treat them the way I want people to treat Genie—the way I was supposed to have been treating them all along.
Genie’s now 14, and her spinal curve is almost completely gone. The day is coming when she’ll leave her back brace behind for good, but I know the compassion she gained from her years of treatment will last a lifetime. She’s not just a kid with a straight back; she’s a person with real backbone.

Source : N
ymetroparents , 26th April 2018 

Lincoln City academy player could be forced to give up football for five years after operation

A talented young Lincoln City academy player could be forced to give up football for five years unless he gets life-changing surgery overseas.
Tyler Chambers from Wragby suffers from scoliosis, which means his spine is curved. In Tyler’s case, his spine is bent 65 degrees.
The nine-year-old needs an operation to straighten his spine – but the only treatment available on the NHS would mean he would have to give up football for as long as five years.

Imps-mad Tyler and his family are trying to raise money to get alternative treatment in Germany in a bid to save his dreams of a career in football.

The youngster told the BBC he can’t bear to stop playing football.
He said: “I really do not want to stop playing football because it is the only thing that I like in my life.”
His family have set up in a Go Fund Me page to raise £30,000 for the operation, though up to £45,000 could be needed for the operation called Vertebral Body Tethering (VBT).
VBT was introduced in the US about five years ago.

It is a treatment used in children with scoliosis and involves placing screws in each bone of the spine over the length of the curve.
The screws are connected by a flexible ‘cord’ to partially correct and tether the long side of the curve while allowing growth on the short side of the curve potentially producing further correction of the scoliosis.
Mum Natasha Ward said she first noticed something wasn’t right in April 2016 and so booked a GP appointment.
From here, young Tyler saw consultants at Louth Hospital who then referred him to Sheffield Children's Hospital, where an MRI scan was carried out on his spine.

Tyler was then recalled for another MRI - with dye to look at his brain - which also discovered two other conditions.
These were Syringomyelia, which is a rare disorder where cysts form within the spinal cord, and Chiari Malformation, where the lower part of the brain pushes down into the spinal canal.
A difficult decision was made by Natasha in December 2016 for Tyler to have brain surgery for the Chiari Malformation as it was putting pressure on the brainstem and spinal cord and was obstructing the flow of fluid around his brain and spinal cord.

Although the surgery helped, his scoliosis and Syringomyelia remain.
Despite wearing a SpineCor Brace for 20 hours a day, Tyler still suffers with pain, breathing problems and posture, as well as dizziness, severe headaches, balance issues, nose bleeds, numbness and tingling due to the Chiari Malformation and Syringomyelia.
Tyler had another MRI in November 2017, which found the cysts were still there and the curve had progressed rapidly.However, the NHS has said it does not routinely commission VBT over concerns surrounding long-term safety.

A spokesperson for the NHS told Lincolnshire Live: “There is currently not enough clinical evidence for the NHS to be able to routinely commission vertebral body tethering (VBT) because there is uncertainty about its long term safety and effectiveness.
There has been agreement among clinicians that it may help some patients, but it has been agreed that formal evaluation is required before it can be routinely carried out.

Source :Lincolnshirelive , 26 April 2018