Breakthrough prosthetic device aids girl - Dallas News | myFOXdfw.com

FOX Medical Team

Breakthrough prosthetic device aids girl

Posted: Updated:
MIAMI -

A medical breakthrough may spare a young cancer survivor from having to undergo one surgery after another as she gets older. It's a prosthetic device that can be expanded painlessly as her body grows.
 
Veronica Avila is only seven, so she has a lot more growing to do. But because she had bone cancer, doctors had to take out a large piece of her femur and replace it.

"It affected her growth plate, which is the area of the bone that children grow from. It's how the leg gets longer over time," said Dr. Sheila Conway of the University of Miami Health System.

But at Miami Children's Hospital, doctors found a device that can be expanded without the need for painful surgeries.

The medical breakthrough involves a prosthetic that can be expanded with non-invasive procedures.   It will allow veronica's leg to grow without the need for several operations, which almost eliminates the possibility of future infections.

"Previously, the prosthesis that we'd put in had to be lengthened with a procedure in the operating room several times a year for the entire child's growth. In this case, we were able to put in a prosthesis that can be expanded over time with the use of an external magnet," said Conway.

Veronica's parents fought back tears, after the surgery, saying their daughter is cancer-free for the first time since her diagnosis -five months ago.

Her father says he is incredibly thankful for the breakthrough that helped save his daughter's life and for the donations that helped pay for the procedure.

Veronica is also feeling thankful. When asked about her Christmas list, she says she already got what she wanted: a chance at a cure.

Doctors say the process of expanding her prosthetic will not be painful for her and it only takes about 20 minutes each time.
 

  • More Health NewsMore>>

  • FOX Medical Team

    Website maps disease outbreak around the world

    Website maps disease outbreak around the world

    Thursday, August 28 2014 9:51 AM EDT2014-08-28 13:51:35 GMT
    It was a scene that had the whole world talking, two Ebola-infected American aid workers arriving at Emory University Hospital, in full protective gear.
    It was a scene that had the whole world talking, two Ebola-infected American aid workers arriving at Emory University Hospital, in full protective gear.
  • Mom-to-be battles aggressive breast cancer during pregnancy

    Mom-to-be battles aggressive breast cancer during pregnancy

    Wednesday, August 27 2014 6:40 PM EDT2014-08-27 22:40:40 GMT
    The FOX Medical Team's Beth Galvin introduces us to a mother who had to undergo chemo while she was pregnant.
    The FOX Medical Team's Beth Galvin introduces us to a mother who had to undergo chemo while she was pregnant.
  • Easy fixes for anxiety

    Easy fixes for anxiety

    Tuesday, August 26 2014 7:14 PM EDT2014-08-26 23:14:02 GMT

    The FOX Medical Team's Beth Galvin shows us new tactics doctors are trying, to help patients tackle anxiety.

    The FOX Medical Team's Beth Galvin shows us new tactics doctors are trying, to help patients tackle anxiety.


  • CHILDREN'S HOSPITAL HEROESMore>>

  • Hospital Heroes

    Hospital Heroes

    Children's Miracle Network Hospitals raises funds for 170 children's hospitals across the United States and Canada.  Click here for more on our local heroes!
Powered by WorldNow

KDFW FOX 4
400 N. Griffin Street
Dallas, Texas 75202

Main Station Directory:
(214) 720-4444
News Fax:
(214) 720-3263 or (214) 720-3333

Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | New Terms of Service What's new | Ad Choices