2-yr-old gets windpipe made of own cells
Chicago (PTI): In a pioneering surgery, a two-year-old girl born without a windpipe has become the youngest patient ever to have the vital organ...
Chicago (PTI): In a pioneering surgery, a two-year-old girl born without a windpipe has become the youngest patient ever to have the vital organ successfully grown from her own stem cells.A Hannah Warren has been unable to talk, swallow or eat on her own since she was born in South Korea in 2010. She lived her whole life in an intensive care unit with a breathing tube. In a nine-hour surgery last month at a central Illinois hospital, the bio-engineered windpipe was placed inside Hannah. When she woke up after the operation she was breathing on her own for the first time in her life. Hannah's medical team custom-designed a tube using tiny plastic fibers. It was then bathed in stem cells taken from her bone marrow to promote tissue growth, 'CBS News' reported. Three weeks after the surgery, she's active and able to even taste her first lollipop. Doctors believe in a few months, she will be able to go home for the first time and may even be able to talk. The device is made from her own cells, so there is little danger of Hannah's body rejecting it. Moreover, what makes this technology so exciting is the promise of being able to manufacture organs in a matter of weeks without waiting for a donor. Her parents, Darryl and Young-mi Warren were told Hannah would not live past age six. "Hannah didn't have a chance. There was no hope. We were waiting for her to die essentially," said Darryl. Her only hope was an artificial windpipe; an experimental device which had been tried in only five other patients, none in the US, and none of them were children. "Lately it's just been kind of fun kind of watching her to learn how to live without a tube hanging out of her mouth. "So now her lips are together she's learning about her environment with two new senses, before she never tasted and she never smelled," said Dr Mark Holterman, one of Hannah's surgeons.