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…The words of Professor Geoff Raisman, chair of Neural Regeneration at University College London’s Institute of Neurology following an astonishing breakthrough in spinal cord regeneration. For the first time, doctors have successfully implanted harvested cells from the human nose into a gap in the spinal cord of Darek Fidyka, a Bulgarian who was confined to a wheelchair in 2010 after a knife attack. These cells have enabled Mr Fidyka’s spinal nerve fibres to re-grow and bridge his severed cord returning sensation and limited movement to his legs.
Prof Raisan went on to say “We believe that this procedure is the breakthrough which, as it is further developed, will result in a historic change in the currently hopeless outlook for people disabled by spinal cord injury.”
This represents a major breakthrough in the treatment of spinal cord injury and offers significant hope for those affected. While some people with partial spinal cord lesions have made remarkable recoveries, a complete break in the spinal cord had previously been assumed to be unrepairable. With this pioneering surgery Mr Fidyka has been able to resume walking with a frame and had been able to resume a more independent life even to the extent that he is able to drive a car. As the science behind this procedure continues to be developed the outlook for people disabled by spinal cord injury can only be improved even further.
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