Friday, August 26, 2011

Pediatric Endoprosthesis Surgery

Each year in this country, 448 children receive a devastating diagnosis. They are told that they have bone cancer. In most cases, the recommended treatment involves amputation and chemotherapy. We see these young patients in our practice and are continually amazed by their ability to accept, adapt and participate in life.

A pioneering implanted prosthesis is giving hope to these children and their families. In some cases the infected bone is removed and replaced with an expandable chrome and titanium implant. This prosthetic "bone" can be adjusted with specialized magnets to accommodate for the growth of the child.

The endoprosthesis surgery is both expensive and painful, but when successful, the child emerges from bone cancer with only a scar and memories. The limb is saved, sparing the youngster from a lifetime of standard prosthetic care. Once recovered, the child is able to resume an active lifestyle by participating in sports, swimming and even horseback riding.

September marks Pediatric Cancer Awareness Month. We thought that this was an appropriate time to bring light to this exciting development. We remain optimistic that we will see a marked decrease in the number of pediatric cancer patients requiring our care.

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