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Wednesday, December 16, 2009

New Stem Cell Glue

New Stem Cell Glue Saves Climber's Leg! That's the headline over at Sky.com News. Andrew Kent broke his leg so badly (his tibia - the shinbone - had broken through the skin just above his ankle) while rock climbing in the Lake District that traditional surgery failed. Surgeons warned that he was likely to lose his leg unless they tried the new stem cell technique.

The new stem cell technique involves the removal of stem cells from the bone marrow in his patients hip. These were then mixed with a new collagen gel called Cartifill to make a paste, which was smeared into the fractures. They finally fixed his leg in a metal cage to gently squeeze the bones together.

Check out the presentation below...


The gel holds the stem cells against the bone, where they form a new layer of cartilage. Ten patients have been treated so far in Britain with an 80% success rate. The technique only costs a few hundred pounds - far less than alternative techniques.

With this stem cell glue Mr. Kent won't be able to run for about a year, but after 18 months his bones will have healed completely.

That is awesome how medical marvels like this are being made available to commoners like us. :)

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