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6 crazy medical miracles

Quinn Discerni, Staff Writer

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We live in a world of medical miracles. As science advances, new treatments become available to the public, and people are healed in exciting and experimental ways.

The following describes six different examples of how people were cured in ways many people would never expect to be possible.

  1. Monkey head transplant

Via New Scientist.com, surgeon Sergio Canavero believes that human head transplantation can be possible in two years. Why? Because scientists at Harbin Medical University in China have conducted a successful experiment in which the severed heads of a monkey was transplanted onto the body of another monkey. The monkey survived the experiment, though it was only kept alive by scientists for 20 hours after the procedure. In Canavero’s mind, this procedure could become useful for people suffering from any type of full-body paralysis.

  1. Girl regrew her hand using her own leg.

Via Orange News 9-year-old girl in China lost her hand after being run over by a tractor. Because the hand was in no shape to be reattached immediately, the doctors involved decided to attach it to her leg while it healed. After three months of living with a hand on her leg, the girl underwent a transplant surgery and reattached the hand to its proper place. According to the spokesman of the medical team, the girl should recover a good amount of dexterity in her hand after physical therapy and will have to undergo two more operations to improve motor functions.

  1. The face transplant

According to CNN after suffering from a terrible electrical accident that disfigured his entire face, Dallas Weins underwent the first successful face transplant in the U.S. Instead of using skin grafts to heal the man’s face, the doctors decided to go “out of the box.” Weins was put into a 90-day medically induced coma while doctors were performing surgeries on his face. The medical team successfully transplanted a donor forehead, nasal structure, nose, lips and facial skin. In the future, Weins’ nerves are expected to recover, meaning he will regain feeling and movement in much of his face.

  1. The six-organ transplant

Via ABC News, a nine-year-old Alannah Shevenell of Hollis, Maine, received an incredible six-organ transplant. The girl was diagnosed with a myofibroblastic tumor, which is generally defined as an inflammatory tumor of the soft tissue. Because of this tumor, she was in need of a replacement esophagus, liver, stomach, spleen, pancreas and small intestine. Since it is so difficult to find organ donors, especially for children, Alannah had to wait for an entire year before he a donor was found. When the proper organs were located, a medical team immediately went into action, executing a 14-hour surgery in which all six organs successfully, via ABC News.

  1. 3D printing

According to the Telegraph media group, a doctor was able to 3D print a pelvis for 60-year-old cancer patient. This patient had lost half of his pelvis to a rare bone cancer called chondrosarcoma and was unable to walk, so orthopedic surgeon Craig Gerrand decided that the procedure could seriously help him. The patient’s body was scanned so that exact measurements could be made for the printed pelvis based on how much of the bone had been cut out. The pelvis itself was made with a 3D printer and coated in minerals that would help the bone continue to grow. The man is now able to walk with the help of a cane.

  1. Artificial Skin

Mr. Orlando, the anatomy teacher at Notre Dame Preparatory, knows of an incredible advancement in the field of medicine. According to Orlando, the Kellar Lab at the Northern Arizona University specializes in biomaterials and regenerative medicine and has successfully tested incredible new ways to heal skin damage. “The people there were able to take artificial skin and attach it to a person’s damaged arm. The fake skin assimilated with the person’s real skin and the arm healed much faster,” says Orlando. He finished by saying, “It’s really amazing what they can do in medicine now.”

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6 crazy medical miracles