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Author Topic: Voicebox transplant trials in UK get go-ahead  (Read 3143 times)

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Offline Clark

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Voicebox transplant trials in UK get go-ahead
« on: June 20, 2011, 01:02:56 PM »

Voicebox transplant trials in UK get go-ahead
First procedure may be carried out within a year after Royal College of Surgeons backs pioneering scientist in report
Sarah Boseley

The UK's first voicebox transplant may be less than a year away, after the Royal College of Surgeons gave its seal of approval for trials to take place.

A report by the college said the pioneering procedure could help people who had cancer of the larynx to speak and breathe normally again.

The decision gives support to Martin Birchall, professor of laryngology at the University College London Ear Institute, who was the lead scientist involved in the ground-breaking 18-hour operation on a woman in the US last October. Brenda Charett Jensen had been able to communicate only with a handheld electronic device for 11 years and breathed through a tracheotomy tube. Two weeks after the operation, she was able to speak her first words and can now talk normally.

"This operation has restored my life," she said. "I feel so blessed to have been given this opportunity. It is a miracle. I'm talking, talking, talking, which just amazes my family and friends."

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