Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

K.U.Leuven Scientist Develops New Surgical Technique For Laryngeal Tumours

28.07.2004


Professor Pierre Delaere (Otorhinolaryngology section, K.U.Leuven) has in the past decade developed a new surgical technique for larynx reconstruction. In an increasing number of cases, this innovative technique can save the larynx in patients suffering from vocal cord cancer. Patients are able to breathe, swallow and speak normally following the operation, something that was previously impossible since the entire larynx frequently needed to be removed, even if only one vocal cord was affected.



The larynx separates the digestive system and the respiratory system. If the larynx is removed then the separation must be effected in some other way. Persons without a larynx can still eat if the oesophagus is connected directly to the oral cavity. However, this means that breathing through the mouth and nose becomes impossible and a permanent opening (stoma) for the trachea has to be made in the patient’s neck. This is a very conspicuous intervention and results in many problems of adaptation. Speech is still possible using an apparatus placed in the stoma, but the patient must cover the opening with his finger.

Prof. Delaere investigated why the larynx was completely removed in almost every case. In part, this is a result of the complex structure of the larynx itself. If part of the larynx is removed, two main problems arise: new tissue must be found to replace what has been removed, and the supply of blood must be optimal to ensure that the new tissue does not die.


Prof. Delaere found solutions to both these problems. Since the human trachea is five centimetres too long, this extra length can be stretched out and put in place of the part of the larynx which was removed, as long as a sufficient blood supply is maintained. The solution to this was to take a bit of tissue from the forearm, wrap it around the trachea and connect it with the blood vessels in the neck. Following such an operation, patients can breathe as before through the mouth and nose, and they still have their sense of smell. In most cases they have no problem swallowing and can still speak naturally, though with only one vocal cord the voice will be softer and hoarser.

After many successful operations at K.U.Leuven University Hospital, Prof. Delaere’s technique is now past the experimental phase and is described in his book, Laryngotracheal Reconstruction: From Lab to Clinic. Now the complete removal of the larynx can be avoided in one in five cases of laryngeal cancer. An early diagnosis is of crucial importance since the prognosis gets worse as the tumour further develops.

The incidence of laryngeal cancer continues to rise. Of all types of cancer, 3.5% are cancers of the larynx. In 90% of these cases, smoking is the main cause, sometimes combined with excessive alcohol use.

Pierre Delaere | alfa
Further information:
http://www.kuleuven.ac.be

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Structural framework for tumors also provides immune protection
26.02.2020 | Medical College of Georgia at Augusta University

nachricht Finding new clues to brain cancer treatment
21.02.2020 | Case Western Reserve University

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

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

Im Focus: High-pressure scientists in Bayreuth discover promising material for information technology

Researchers at the University of Bayreuth have discovered an unusual material: When cooled down to two degrees Celsius, its crystal structure and electronic properties change abruptly and significantly. In this new state, the distances between iron atoms can be tailored with the help of light beams. This opens up intriguing possibilities for application in the field of information technology. The scientists have presented their discovery in the journal "Angewandte Chemie - International Edition". The new findings are the result of close cooperation with partnering facilities in Augsburg, Dresden, Hamburg, and Moscow.

The material is an unusual form of iron oxide with the formula Fe₅O₆. The researchers produced it at a pressure of 15 gigapascals in a high-pressure laboratory...

Im Focus: From China to the South Pole: Joining forces to solve the neutrino mass puzzle

Study by Mainz physicists indicates that the next generation of neutrino experiments may well find the answer to one of the most pressing issues in neutrino physics

Among the most exciting challenges in modern physics is the identification of the neutrino mass ordering. Physicists from the Cluster of Excellence PRISMA+ at...

Im Focus: Therapies without drugs

Fraunhofer researchers are investigating the potential of microimplants to stimulate nerve cells and treat chronic conditions like asthma, diabetes, or Parkinson’s disease. Find out what makes this form of treatment so appealing and which challenges the researchers still have to master.

A study by the Robert Koch Institute has found that one in four women will suffer from weak bladders at some point in their lives. Treatments of this condition...

Im Focus: A step towards controlling spin-dependent petahertz electronics by material defects

The operational speed of semiconductors in various electronic and optoelectronic devices is limited to several gigahertz (a billion oscillations per second). This constrains the upper limit of the operational speed of computing. Now researchers from the Max Planck Institute for the Structure and Dynamics of Matter in Hamburg, Germany, and the Indian Institute of Technology in Bombay have explained how these processes can be sped up through the use of light waves and defected solid materials.

Light waves perform several hundred trillion oscillations per second. Hence, it is natural to envision employing light oscillations to drive the electronic...

Im Focus: Freiburg researcher investigate the origins of surface texture

Most natural and artificial surfaces are rough: metals and even glasses that appear smooth to the naked eye can look like jagged mountain ranges under the microscope. There is currently no uniform theory about the origin of this roughness despite it being observed on all scales, from the atomic to the tectonic. Scientists suspect that the rough surface is formed by irreversible plastic deformation that occurs in many processes of mechanical machining of components such as milling.

Prof. Dr. Lars Pastewka from the Simulation group at the Department of Microsystems Engineering at the University of Freiburg and his team have simulated such...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

70th Lindau Nobel Laureate Meeting: Around 70 Laureates set to meet with young scientists from approx. 100 countries

12.02.2020 | Event News

11th Advanced Battery Power Conference, March 24-25, 2020 in Münster/Germany

16.01.2020 | Event News

Laser Colloquium Hydrogen LKH2: fast and reliable fuel cell manufacturing

15.01.2020 | Event News

 
Latest News

Scientists develop algorithm for researching evolution of species with WGD

26.02.2020 | Information Technology

MOF co-catalyst allows selectivity of branched aldehydes of up to 90%

26.02.2020 | Life Sciences

Structural framework for tumors also provides immune protection

26.02.2020 | Health and Medicine

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>