December 29, 2008

UK Doctors Perform “˜Brain Glue’ Surgery On Newborn Baby

Surgeons in the UK have performed an operation on a baby using glue to reduce the size of the child's brain tumor, making it the youngest child ever to undergo such an operation.

The procedure was performed on the infant at London's Great Ormond Street Hospital while she was less than a week old.

The baby had a large, benign tumor and doctors used glue to block the blood vessels supplying it, effectively starving it of nutrients.

Reports said the baby was "doing well" after the surgery.

"If successful, it could be groundbreaking," said neurosurgeon Dominic Thompson, who carried out the procedure.

"Madison is not out of the woods yet but she does look remarkably well."

Madison, who is now eight weeks old, was born with an obviously swollen head, which meant that the tumor could be spotted quickly.

It is "very unusual" for tumors to present themselves so early in life, according to Thompson.

A tube during the procedure was guided into the blood vessels connected to the tumor, and the glue passed through it to seal them.

Recent scans showed the treatment was starving the tumor of nutrients and oxygen, and causing it to shrink.

Madison is now putting on weight and the family was hopeful that the tumor would continue to reduce in size, according to the child's grandfather.


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