Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:


Surgeon 'gluing' the breastbone together after open-heart surgery

Technique developed at the University of Calgary

An innovative method is being used to repair the breastbone after it is intentionally broken to provide access to the heart during open-heart surgery. The technique uses a state-of-the-art adhesive that rapidly bonds to bone and accelerates the recovery process.

"We can now heal the breastbone in hours instead of weeks after open-heart surgery. Patients can make a full recovery after surgery and get back to full physical activities in days instead of months," reports Dr. Paul W.M. Fedak, MD PhD FRCSC, a cardiac surgeon at Foothills Medical Centre and scientist at the Faculty of Medicine who pioneered the new procedure.

Over 20 patients have received the new technique in Calgary as part of a pilot study. Fedak and Kathryn King, RN PhD are the co-principal investigators on the study. King, a cardiovascular nurse scientist, is an expert in post-operative recovery after open-heart surgery. "We know that recovery from sternotomy is a multi-faceted process that includes not only healing of the breastbone but the ability to return to normal activities," she says. "Being able to resume normal activities is a hallmark of a good recovery; this surgical innovation should enable that."

The patients report substantially less pain and discomfort after surgery and the use of strong pain medication, such as narcotics, is profoundly reduced if not completely eliminated with use of the procedure. The ability to deep breathe, known to play a key role in recovery, is also substantially improved.

Richard Cuming's chest was repaired in June KryptoniteTM adhesive, a biocompatible polymer (manufactured by Doctors Research Group Inc., (Connecticut USA). Two years earlier he had open-heart surgery repaired the traditional way – sewing his breastbone back together with wire. That wire broke, his breastbone opened, and Cuming had a difficult time.

"I couldn't accomplish simple tasks like squeezing toothpaste, turning the steering wheel in my car or pulling open a heavy door without discomfort and pain. Anytime I coughed or sneezed there was movement in my chest and significant pain, I think the worst part of the ordeal was that I stopped doing things 'in case they would hurt'" says Cuming.

After his chest was 'glued' back together using KryptoniteTM adhesive and wires he had an entirely different experience. "I had a little bit of pain, but this was a walk in the park compared to my earlier recovery. I can do anything I could do prior to the original surgery. I feel wonderful."

The encouraging results of this pilot study have prompted the Calgary researchers to establish a worldwide study to further investigate its benefits. The STICK Trial (STernal Innovative Closure with KryptoniteTM) aims to apply the technique in over 500 patients across the globe over the next 12 – 24 months.

"We are proud of the innovative work being done at Foothills Medical Centre," says Dr. L. Brent Mitchell, Director of the Libin Cardiovascular Institute of Alberta and Head of the Clinical Department of Cardiac Sciences at Alberta Health Services, "I used to warn my open-heart surgery patients that they would feel like they had been hit by a truck during a long recovery period; I'm glad I don't have to say that anymore."

More than one million open-heart surgeries are performed in the world each year by splitting the breastbone. Until this recent discovery, wire closure of the breastbone had been standard practice since routine heart surgery was established a half century ago.

The investigators believe that this improved method of chest closure will become a new standard of care for patients undergoing open-heart surgery. Fedak has started training surgeons in other Canadian and European hospitals where it is rapidly gaining popularity.

KryptoniteTM is approved for use in Canada (Health Canada), USA (FDA), and Europe (CE Mark). This pilot study has been supported in part by Doctor's Research Group Inc.

Jordanna Heller | EurekAlert!
Further information:

More articles from Studies and Analyses:

nachricht Diagnoses: When Are Several Opinions Better Than One?
19.07.2016 | Max-Planck-Institut für Bildungsforschung

nachricht High in calories and low in nutrients when adolescents share pictures of food online
07.04.2016 | University of Gothenburg

All articles from Studies and Analyses >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Etching Microstructures with Lasers

Ultrafast lasers have introduced new possibilities in engraving ultrafine structures, and scientists are now also investigating how to use them to etch microstructures into thin glass. There are possible applications in analytics (lab on a chip) and especially in electronics and the consumer sector, where great interest has been shown.

This new method was born of a surprising phenomenon: irradiating glass in a particular way with an ultrafast laser has the effect of making the glass up to a...

Im Focus: Light-driven atomic rotations excite magnetic waves

Terahertz excitation of selected crystal vibrations leads to an effective magnetic field that drives coherent spin motion

Controlling functional properties by light is one of the grand goals in modern condensed matter physics and materials science. A new study now demonstrates how...

Im Focus: New 3-D wiring technique brings scalable quantum computers closer to reality

Researchers from the Institute for Quantum Computing (IQC) at the University of Waterloo led the development of a new extensible wiring technique capable of controlling superconducting quantum bits, representing a significant step towards to the realization of a scalable quantum computer.

"The quantum socket is a wiring method that uses three-dimensional wires based on spring-loaded pins to address individual qubits," said Jeremy Béjanin, a PhD...

Im Focus: Scientists develop a semiconductor nanocomposite material that moves in response to light

In a paper in Scientific Reports, a research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute describes a novel light-activated phenomenon that could become the basis for applications as diverse as microscopic robotic grippers and more efficient solar cells.

A research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) has developed a revolutionary, light-activated semiconductor nanocomposite material that can be used...

Im Focus: Diamonds aren't forever: Sandia, Harvard team create first quantum computer bridge

By forcefully embedding two silicon atoms in a diamond matrix, Sandia researchers have demonstrated for the first time on a single chip all the components needed to create a quantum bridge to link quantum computers together.

"People have already built small quantum computers," says Sandia researcher Ryan Camacho. "Maybe the first useful one won't be a single giant quantum computer...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>



Event News

#IC2S2: When Social Science meets Computer Science - GESIS will host the IC2S2 conference 2017

14.10.2016 | Event News

Agricultural Trade Developments and Potentials in Central Asia and the South Caucasus

14.10.2016 | Event News

World Health Summit – Day Three: A Call to Action

12.10.2016 | Event News

Latest News

Ice shelf vibrations cause unusual waves in Antarctic atmosphere

25.10.2016 | Earth Sciences

Fluorescent holography: Upending the world of biological imaging

25.10.2016 | Power and Electrical Engineering

Etching Microstructures with Lasers

25.10.2016 | Process Engineering

More VideoLinks >>>