The first ever surgical breakthrough in the field of stem cell has been achieved by giving a newborn boy lacking cheekbones a new lease on life. The surgery used cadaver bone and the boy's own stem sells to grow new facial bones.
Brad Guilkey, 15, suffers from a rare kind of genetic disorder, wherein the bones and other tissues are prevented to develop in the face. Besides the severe facial disfigurements, the condition also causes Brad's ability to play sports to be limited, like other boys of his age. Without the bones in the face he could crush his eyeballs by just a blow from the basketball.
Doctors at the Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center performed an experimental treatment on Brad, implanting cadaver bone in his face and injecting his own stem cells into it, during an eight-houur surgical procedure.
This surgery was conducted in May and since then Brad has grown solid bone in his face facilitated by the stem cells triggering the cadaver bone back to life. Dr. Jesse Taylor of the Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Centre, is extremely taken aback with the breathtaking success of the experimental stem cell surgery.
Brad's parents consider it nothing less than a miracle.
As per the National Institutes of Health, about 1 out of every 50,000 people are affected by this rare syndrome.