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Spanish surgeons successfully perform complex face transplant

April 2, 2015

BARCELONA, Spain: A team of professionals in various disciplines at the Valld'Hebron University Hospital in Barcelona has successfully carried out an extensive face transplantation. The complicated surgical procedure is the second of its kind to be conducted at the Spanish university hospital. According to the doctors, it is the world’s most complex face transplant performed to date.

3-D-printed models revolutionise oral and maxillofacial surgery

March 3, 2015

MAINZ, Germany: Dentists at the University Medical Center of the Johannes Gutenberg University of Mainz are using the innovative technology of 3-D printing to create exact patient-customised models for various surgical procedures. This novel method helps to optimise individualised medicine by facilitating precise work in the fields of reconstructive surgery and implantology.

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Simple distraction interventions can ease pain and anxiety during surgery

February 25, 2015

GUILDFORD, UK: Being conscious during an operation can make patients feel anxious and is often painful. However, new research from the University of Surrey has found that simple distraction techniques, such as talking to a nurse, watching a DVD or using stress balls, can help patients to relax during varicose vein surgery and reduce their pain.

Non-damaging and efficient: Researcher develops plasma steriliser for medical instruments

February 12, 2015

BOCHUM, Germany: Conventional sterilisation methods are not always effective against all pathogens. By means of plasma, however, exceptionally resistant bacteria strains can be eliminated, as demonstrated by junior professor Dr Katharina Stapelmann from the Institute for Electrical Engineering and Plasma Technology at Ruhr-Universität Bochum. She has developed a steriliser that removes germs from medical instruments efficiently without damaging the material.

Medical check-ups often put off despite cancer symptoms

February 10, 2015

LONDON/KINGSTON UPON HULL, UK: A significant number of people decide against seeing their general practitioner despite red-flag cancer warning symptoms. According a study conducted by Cancer Research UK, they dismiss symptoms as trivial or worry about wasting the doctor’s time.

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International head and neck cancer experts meet for symposium

January 19, 2015

ESSEN, Germany: Experts from 20 nations will gather in Germany from 22 to 24 January for the First International Symposium on Tumor–Host Interaction in Head and Neck Cancer. The symposium will be held in Essen and continues a series of annual meetings on experimental head and neck oncology in collaboration with the oncology working group of the German Society of Oto-Rhino-Laryngology.

Researchers optimise presentation of virtual organ models

January 7, 2015

KARLSRUHE, Germany: During minimally invasive operations, a surgeon has to rely on the information displayed on the screen: a virtual 3-D model of the respective organ shows where a tumour is located and where sensitive vessels can be found. Soft tissue, such as the tissue of the liver, deforms during breathing or when the scalpel is applied. Endoscopic cameras record in real time how the surface deforms, but do not show the deformation of deeper structures, such as tumours. German scientists have now developed a real-time-capable computation method to adapt the virtual organ to the deformed surface profile.

Older cancer patients in the UK miss out on surgery

December 11, 2014

LONDON, UK: A new report by Cancer Research UK and the National Cancer Intelligence Network has found differences in rates of surgery across 21 different cancer types. Although many factors might prevent patients from undergoing surgery (frailty, suffering from more than one illness, being diagnosed at a late stage and patients choosing against it), these new statistics paint a worrying picture.

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Swallowing a sponge could replace endoscopy as precancer test

November 5, 2014

LONDON, UK: Swallowing a sponge on a string could replace traditional endoscopy as an equally effective but less invasive means of diagnosing a condition that could be a forerunner of oesophageal cancer.

AAGA: Study identifies risk factors and consequences for patients

September 30, 2014

LONDON, UK: Accidental awareness is one of the most feared complications of general anaesthesia for both patients and anaesthetists. Patients in the UK and Ireland report this failure of general anaesthesia in approximately 1 in every 19,000 cases, according to the latest research. Accidental awareness during general anaesthesia (AAGA) is when general anaesthesia is intended but the patient remains conscious. The incidence of patient reports of awareness is much lower than previous estimates of awareness, which were as high as 1 in 600.

Orthopaedic operations often rescheduled, postponed or cancelled

September 5, 2014

GOTHENBURG/MÖLNDAL, Sweden: More than one-third of all planned orthopaedic surgery procedures are rescheduled, postponed or cancelled. The most common reasons are cancellation at the patient’s own request or emergency cases having to be prioritised. These are the findings of a study conducted by the Sahlgrenska Academy in association with Sahlgrenska University Hospital.

Touchless technology to benefit neurosurgeons

July 18, 2014

LANCASTER, UK: After the successful trial of a novel technology in vascular surgery procedures, a team from Lancaster and Microsoft has now partnered with neurosurgeons to apply the technology to the manipulation of 3-D volumetric models of the brain for neurosurgery. The pioneering work explores the use of touchless interaction in surgical settings, enabling surgeons to view, control and manipulate medical images without contact.

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Virtual training could improve surgeons’ operating skills

July 11, 2014

LUXEMBOURG: Virtual experiments could soon be helping new surgeons hone their skills before they start working with live patients. This is the objective of European Research Council (ERC) fellow Stéphane Bordas, Professor of Computational Mechanics at the University of Luxembourg. Bordas’ long-term aim is to develop real-time simulators, akin to flight simulators, which will help train surgeons, assist them during operations and contribute to enhancing surgical planning.

NeoSurgical honoured with Kinetic Process Innovation Award

June 30, 2014

DUBLIN, Ireland/CHICAGO, USA: NeoSurgical, an international medical device company focused on advancing safer, simpler and superior solutions for laparoscopic and minimally invasive surgery, announced today that it has been named the 2014 Vision Award recipient for its innovative engineering of neoClose. The Kinetic Process Innovation Award recognises companies that demonstrate innovation and focuses on significant benefits and effectiveness in the industry it serves, the medical device industry in this case.

Five-year study monitors women with breast implants

June 18, 2014

LONDON, UK: Silicone implant manufacturer Eurosilicone has published safety data collected from a five-year review. The multicentre study monitored 1,010 Cristalline Paragel implants made by Eurosilicone and implanted in 535 women undergoing either augmentation or reconstructive surgery. Each patient was followed up at three months post-surgery, and then annually thereafter.

Researchers develop first 3-D model of synapse

June 16, 2014

GÖTTINGEN & BERLIN, Germany: The molecular architecture of synapses has been unknown until now. A research team from Göttingen has managed to determine the copy numbers and positions of all of the important building blocks of a synapse for the first time. This has allowed them to reconstruct the first scientifically accurate 3-D model of a synapse. In the future, these findings are hoped to contribute to the identification of anomalies in neuronal anatomy in neurodegenerative diseases, such as Parkinson’s disease.

Scientists develop ear implants with a memory

April 10, 2014

HANOVER, Germany: Today, 3-D printers can print almost everything. The challenge, however, is to print highly precise and small parts made of materials that are difficult to process. Scientists at the Laser Zentrum Hannover (LZH) have demonstrated the laser manufacture of tiny implants with a memory function for complex shapes, such as the cochlea of the human inner ear.

Joint initiative introduces strategic research agenda to fight antibiotic resistance

April 4, 2014

BRUSSELS, Belgium: Antibiotics have saved millions of lives from once-deadly infectious diseases. However, misuse of antibiotics and other antimicrobials in humans and animals has led to bacteria developing resistance. On 3 April 2013, the Joint Programming initiative on Antimicrobial Resistance (JPIAMR) presented its strategic research agenda, which outlines the steps that need to be taken to minimise antimicrobial resistance (AMR), one of today’s most serious public health threats.

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