Surgeons rebuild teen’s jaw using 3D technique

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Surgeons rebuild teen’s jaw using 3D technique

Mafraq Hospital team transplants bone from boy’s hip to his face after removing tumour

By Jasmine Al Kuttab

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Published: Wed 24 Jun 2015, 1:06 AM

Last updated: Wed 8 Jul 2015, 3:10 PM

Dr John Devine examines Mohammed Al Mazem — Supplied photo

Abu Dhabi - Mafraq Hospital has completed what is believed to be the first surgery of its kind in the national capital.

A team of maxillofacial cancer surgeons (head and neck specialists) recently operated on a 16 year old Emirati boy, Mohammed Al Mazem and has successfully rebuild his jaw using the latest 3D technology after removing a large destructive tumour.

The surgeons recreated a 3D virtual model of the young man’s facial skeleton to be used as operative guide before, during and after surgery, thus allowing doctors to reconstruct and navigate smoothly and carefully.

A mirrored image of the boy’s jaw was created, which helped doctors transplant bone from his hip to his face through micro-surgery. The modern technology also allowed surgeons to plan, design and place free tissue transplants, with great accuracy.

Al Mafraq Hospital’s specialised team give patients with trauma injuries, abnormalities in the head and neck region, cancer and other diseases, the chance to be treated locally, instead of having to travel abroad.

Dr John Devine, who leads the Maxillofacial team, believes that the modern technology will allow patients to be effectively treated in Abu Dhabi.

“Previously it seems that the limiting factor for performing such cases in the UAE was reconstruction, but now, with this cutting edge technology, we can recreate faces in Abu Dhabi, allowing our patients to lead normal lives.”

Dr Devine also points out that Al Mazem’s case went successful as planned.

“Our most recent case was only in the hospital for nine days and is now home enjoying life,” he said.

The team has performed ten major facial and head reconstructive surgeries since January 2015, all of which have been successful.

These surgeries not only relate to cancer of the face, mouth and throat, can also be done on victims of bomb blasts - One such case was brought to Abu Dhabi for reconstructive surgery. 

Dr Ali Al Suwaidi, Acting Chief Medical Officer of Mafraq Hospital said: “These surgeries are extremely complex and in order to ensure a high quality clinical practice, we have built a team from many departments including nursing, critical care and outpatient staff.”

Al Suwaidi also emphasises on how the surgeries that are carried out in the nation’s capital, are equivalent to the finest practices around the world.

“We are fortunate that we have world class skills and expertise at our finger tips, which means we can offer surgery that is in line with the best international practices, and most importantly, results.”

The young boy’s father believes that although the experience of finding a lump on his young son’s face was traumatising, he is nevertheless pleased with the success of the surgery.  “It was very successful and I am so happy that Mohammed is much better now. He is recuperating and talking.”

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