The custom device that Mendel fashioned features two large rods and a couple of smaller rods fixed to the pelvis and spine with 14 screws to help provide support while the leg bones fused together.
The Ohio State surgery marked the first time that surgeons used living bone from the patient's amputated limb to reconstruct the pelvis in this fashion. This allowed the bones to fuse together to create an intact pelvic ring strong enough to allow the patient to walk again on a prosthetic leg, according to Mayerson, director of the division of musculoskeletal oncology in the department of orthopedics.
"Once you disrupt the pelvic ring to the extent done in this case, the stability of your spine connected to your pelvis is not nearly as good. The surgical team came up with a way to reconstruct the patient's pelvic ring to provide solid support, so that he could be as active as possible," adds Mayerson.
The surgical team amputated the patient's leg, but preserved the femur (thigh bone) and fibula (lower leg bone), along with their still-attached blood vessels, skin and muscles that Miller then transferred into the pelvis.
The patient, 53-year-old Mike Prindle of Baltimore, Ohio, was a mail carrier who developed a chondrosarcoma tumor on his pelvis and sacrum (tailbone) that, if left untreated, would have eventually killed him. Since this type of bone cancer does not respond to chemotherapy or radiation, surgery was his only treatment option.
The surgery and recovery proved successful with no major complications. Earlier this year, Prindle was fitted with a high-tech computerized prosthetic leg, and has been undergoing physical therapy rehabilitation sessions twice a week at Ohio St
|Contact: Eileen Scahill|
Ohio State University Medical Center