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Entries in surgery (83)

Wednesday
Jul112012

Surgery for Fat Toes on the Rise

E.R. recently went in for surgery to reshape his big toe. (Courtesy Dr. Oliver Zong)(NEW YORK) -- When patients seek out cosmetic surgery from New York-based Dr. Oliver Zong, they're often looking to remove fat, but not from their bellies or thighs.

Zong is a podiatrist, and one of his specialties is slimming down people's fat toes -- "toe-besity," he calls it. He's been in practice for about a decade, and when he started, toe reshaping was unheard of.

"When people first started asking, I said 'What?'" said Zong, who is surgical director at NYC FootCare. "We were mostly doing toe shortenings in the beginning."

Now, he said, more and more people are zoning in on the smaller details of their feet, like the width of their toes.

For many patients, an odd-looking toe is a source of great embarrassment.

E.R., a patient of Zong's, said he hid his fat right big toe for years.

"I always had issues with it," said E.R., who asked to remain anonymous. "It was one of those things that you're just not comfortable with and try to hide it."

On top of being unattractive, the toe also caused discomfort.

"The bone was pushing the nail up, and the nail curved up a little bit, so it was hitting the shoe," he said.

Three weeks ago, the 37-year-old New Yorker had surgery to shave off some fat and bone. His second toe was also a hammertoe, so Zong shaved down the bone of that toe as well.

There's still a lot of swelling, but E.R. said he already feels better about his foot.

"I already see improvement, and I feel so much more confident now," he said.

This type of surgery is considered entirely elective, so insurance companies will not cover the costs, which can range from a few hundred dollars to a few thousand dollars, depending on how complicated the procedure is.

E.R.'s cost $2,500, but Zong said most of the surgeries are not as complex as his was.

Other podiatrists, however, do not support the idea of cosmetic foot surgery.

"I don't think it's ethical unless you're having pain," said Dr. Hillary Brenner, a podiatric surgeon in New York and a member of the American Podiatric Medical Association.

"You're undergoing risks -- there's the risk of anesthesia, infection, deformity of the toe if the surgery is not done right, a risk of reoccurrence and the risk of surgery in general," Brenner said. "It's trauma to the foot."

The American Podiatric Medical Association says that foot surgery is typically performed for medical reasons.

"Surgical procedures of the foot and ankle are generally performed for relief of pain, restoration of function, and reconstruction of deformities. They may have the additional benefit of improved appearance," the association said in a statement.

Brenner said a number of patients -- mostly women -- have come to her requesting cosmetic surgery. Several women hoped to have their pinky toes removed in order to fit into smaller shoes. She always turns them down, however.

"Why fix something that's not broken?" she said.

But Zong doesn't see the harm in performing cosmetic procedures, as long as they are safe and as long as there is something to fix cosmetically.

"I think it's the same as if you would ask for any kind of cosmetic surgery," he said. "They're very embarrassed by the situation and afterward, they gain self-esteem and feel more confident. Some people have said they're so embarrassed that their boyfriends have never seen their feet."

As soon as the swelling is gone and his toe is healed, E.R. said he isn't going to hide his feet anymore. He plans to ditch his sneakers for a more summer-friendly option.

"My goal is to wear flip-flops," he said.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Tuesday
Jul032012

Twin Sisters' Torment Led to Breast Reduction Surgery

Jupiterimages/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- For the first time since they were teenagers, 42-year-old twins Tanesha and Tiwan Sweet can finally go out in public without enduring taunts, stares and whispers.

Up until a few weeks ago, the women suffered years of humiliating harassment for having size 40G breasts.

"I used to work in a nursing home and a lot of the older men groped at me and touched me," Tanesha, who hails from Long Branch, N.J., told ABC News.  "I always went to work wearing two bras and a sweat top, and I would never take it off, even if it was 90 degrees out."

But the torment continued outside of work as well.  Going to the beach, even while covered up in pants and tee shirts, led to more teasing.

"We were just walking along and people were staring, and we've even had cars stop, look and whisper while they're pointing at us," she said.

On top of the emotional pain, the sisters also endured years of back pain and discomfort.  Tanesha said she suffered from unrelenting back spasms.

Relatives and friends who had breast reduction surgery spent years trying to persuade the women to do the same.  They were initially reluctant because of concerns over cost.  Their surgeon, Dr. Russell Ashinoff of The Plastic Surgery Center, said the procedure can cost between $5,000 and $8,000 if not covered by insurance.

But both sisters found out their health insurance would pay for most of the surgery.

While considered a cosmetic procedure, Ashinoff explained it's also a reconstructive procedure that improves self-esteem and eases physical symptoms; the latter is why insurance companies agree to pay for the surgery under certain conditions.

"We removed probably about 1,200 grams from each breast, which is about 2.5 to 3 pounds from each side," he said.

Tanesha said the surgery took her from a 40G to a 38DD, taking quite a bit of stress off her back and neck.

"I haven't had a back spasm since the surgery.  I have had no pain at all," she said.

And her bra size isn't the only part of her wardrobe that has changed.

"I can finally buy a size extra-large shirt now, and I can also wear button-up shirts, which I could never wear before," she joked.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Jun132012

New Weight-Loss Surgery to Lose 20-50 Pounds

Brand X Pictures/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- A new surgical weight-loss procedure is now available to women who are looking to slim down and lose 25 to 70 pounds.

Dr. Tom Lavin, founder of Surgical Specialists in Louisiana, is a pioneer behind the hottest new weight-loss procedure called POSE, which stands for primary obesity surgery endoluminol.

“POSE is for patients who want to lose 25-50, maybe 60 or 70 pounds,” says Lavin. “It’s a much different group of people than we normally approach for bariatric surgery.”

POSE is like the classic bypass operation, but there are no incisions, as everything is done through the mouth using an endoscope. The surgical tools make the stomach about 30 percent smaller, says Lavin, and the patient typically goes home the same day.

Critics argue that while the endoscope has been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, its use in weight-loss surgery has not been approved, and no long-term studies have been done in the U.S. to test its safety or effectiveness.

“Until we have good data, it’s not something that we should be promoting to the public,” says Dr. Shawn Garber, director of the New York Bariatric Group. “You are putting needles through the patient’s stomach, you are putting a device down through the esophagus — there are risks.”

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Tuesday
Jun052012

Surgeon: Remove Kidneys for Transplant Before Donor's Death

Stockbyte/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- The severe shortage of viable organs for transplantation in the U.S. has led a transplant surgeon to propose harvesting kidneys from people who are not dead yet.

Dr. Paul Morrissey, an associate professor of surgery at Brown University's Alpert Medical School, wrote in The American Journal of Bioethics that the protocol known as donation after cardiac death -- meaning death as a result of irreversible damage to the cardiovascular system -- has increased the number of organs available for transplant, but has a number of limitations, including the need to wait until the heart stops.

Because of the waiting time, Morrissey said that about one-third of potential donors end up not being able to donate, and many organs turn out to not be viable as a result.

Instead, he argues in favor of procuring kidneys from patients with severe irreversible brain injury whose families consent to kidney removal before their cardiac and respiratory systems stop functioning.

"These individuals, maintained on mechanical ventilation, do not meet the criteria for brain death," he wrote. In these cases, the patient would be removed from life support and kidneys would be harvested while ensuring that the patient receives anesthesia and pain relief during the operation. After that, the patients would be kept comfortable until they have not had a pulse for five minutes, a threshold at which they are declared dead.

"Under this protocol, the donor is alive at the time of kidney recovery, but a determination has been made and confirmed by medical experts that death is imminent," he wrote.

Kidney removal, he stressed, would not cause the death of the donor, which is "instead caused foremost by the original catastrophic injury and secondarily by terminating mechanical ventilation."

In addition to providing more organs usable for transplant, Morrissey said this revised protocol would allow families to grieve in peace, since surgeons wouldn't need to rush the body into the operating room to remove organs. He said they could also take comfort in the knowledge that their loved one's death saved other lives.

A number of experts responded to Morrissey's proposal in commentaries published in the same journal. Some supported his arguments, while others expressed concern that it wouldn't be in the donor's best interests and could potentially violate medical ethics and the law.

Donald Marquis, a professor at the University of Kansas, wrote that Morrissey's argument has some validity.

Removing both kidneys, he said, "will not make the donor worse off than the donor would have been in the absence of the nephrectomy."

"Though not dead yet, they are 'as good as dead' from an ethical perspective," wrote Franklin Miller, a bioethicist at the National Institutes of Health, along with Dr. Robert Truog, a professor of medical ethics, anesthesiology and pediatrics at Harvard Medical School. "No harm or wrong is committed by procuring vital organs prior to stopping life support, provided that valid consent is obtained for donation."

But removing both kidneys from a living donor would not always be in a patient's best interests.

"There is no reason to believe that registering as an organ donor involves the willingness to undergo premortem double nephrectomy," argued bioethicists Maxwell Smith of the University of Toronto, David Rodriguez-Arias of the Spanish National Research Council and Ivan Ortega of Alcala de Henares University.

And Norman Cantor, a distinguished professor of law at Rutgers School of Law, wrote that removing both kidneys before death could be legally risky.

"An organ retrieval intervention poses some hazard of accelerating death, as by hemorrhage or cardiac arrest," he said. "Any medical action potentially accelerating death, even by a few minutes and even for a gravely debilitated patient, demands a legally recognized justification."

Removing one kidney, he said, could be legally defensible, but removing both "would almost certainly be deemed unlawful under the current legal framework."

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Friday
Jun012012

Microsoft’s Kinect Technology in Trial Use for Surgery

Microsoft(LONDON) -- A video gaming device could change the way surgical procedures are performed. Surgeons at London’s St. Thomas Hospital have been using Microsoft's Kinect technology, which operates by motion sensors, in a trial period to see whether or not the technology makes surgical procedures easier, according to BBC News.

Motion sensors have been around for a while, but what makes the Kinect unique is that it requires no controller at all. Players just wave their hands in front of a sensor, and the technology reads the movements to manipulate images on a screen.
 
In surgery, doctors hold their arms clearly in front of the Kinect and are able to manipulate photos and charts on a monitor. The uses include zooming in and out, rotating pictures, and switching between photos or documents on the monitors. The doctors are also able to use voice commands, reports BBC News.
 
Tom Carrell, a surgeon at St. Thomas Hospital says, according to BBC News, "Until recently I was shouting out across the operating theatre to tell someone to go up, down, left right. But with the Kinect I'm able to get the position that I want quickly -- and also without me having to handle non-sterile things like a keyboard or mouse during the procedure."
 
John Brennan, President of the British Society for Endovascular Therapy says the potential for the technology’s use is great, the BBC reports. "I would find it difficult to think of operating rooms in ten or 15 years time where these were just not the norm."
 
Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Friday
Jun012012

Computer Models Help Doctors Shrink Boy's Head

Johns Hopkins Children's Center(BALTIMORE) -- Seven-year-old Dawa Titung grew up in Nepal with a head the size of a basketball, about 10 inches larger than the average head size for children his age.  He couldn't hold his head up, and strangers would often stare at him.

His mother, Phool Titung, said her son's head was so heavy that she needed help lifting him from his bed or carrying him.

Dawa was born with hydrocephalus, a condition in which too much fluid fills the space between the brain and the skull.  The still-forming skulls of children with the condition will expand around the fluid, causing the head to grow too large.

About one in 500 children are born with hydrocephalus, according to the National Institutes of Health, and doctors can often treat the condition early in life by shunting the excessive fluid to other parts of the body.

But in Nepal, Dawa and his parents had limited access to medical care.  About six months ago, a doctor on a missionary visit to their region told them that help was available from doctors in the U.S.

Dawa's parents brought him to Johns Hopkins Children's Center in Baltimore.  Dr. Amir Dorafshar, the plastic surgeon who performed Dawa's operation, said he had never seen a child's head as large as Dawa's.

"His mother was unable to do all the things that a mother should be able to do," Dorafshar said.  "Our goal was to help his family care for him more easily."

Doctors planned an operation to make Dawa's head smaller.  But the surgery to take apart the skull is risky.  Beneath the skull are very large blood vessels that feed blood to the brain.  Any mistaken slice during surgery can cut those vessels, causing the patient to lose a lot of blood.  Dorafshar said he told the Titungs that Dawa had up to a 50 percent chance of dying during the surgery.

To lower that risk, Dorafshar and his colleagues used computer modeling and brain imaging to plan just where the surgeons would cut the bones of Dawa's skull and design how they could be resized and pieced back together.

"We were able to practice the surgery at our desks before we ever got to the operating room," Dorafshar said.

On May 9, doctors put their plan into action.  The delicate operation took about 12 hours.

Dr. Reid C. Thompson, chairman of neurosurgery at Vanderbilt University, said using computer modeling is an innovative approach to treating advanced hydrocephalus cases like Dawa's, who would likely have experienced serious developmental problems or even death without the surgery.

Thompson said computer modeling technologies will likely become a larger part of modern surgery as doctors and engineers collaborate to try to make different types of operations faster and safer for patients.

After two weeks in the hospital, Dawa was released and is recovering very well.  He suffers developmental delays from his condition and his head is still larger than most children's, but his mother said caring for him will be much easier now.

"Now it's very easy to lift him, carry him from one place to another.  I can do that by myself," Titung said.  "I am very thankful."

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Thursday
May242012

‘American Idol’ Winner Phillip Phillips to Get Kidney Surgery

Michael Becker / FOX(LOS ANGELES) -- Shortly after Phillip Phillips was proclaimed the American Idol 2012 winner Wednesday night, it was learned the crooning champ would soon undergo kidney surgery.

The 21-year-old singer from Leesburg, Ga., had apparently battled severe and chronic kidney stones throughout the American Idol season.

Phillips called into Live! With Kelly Thursday morning to talk about his win and pending surgery.

The newly minted champ told Ripa he’d had only “about two and a half hours of sleep” Wednesday night as he explained that he wouldn’t be able to make his scheduled appearance next week on Live! With Kelly.

“I’ve been sick this whole show,” Phillips told the Ripa. “I’m trying to get all my work done, to recover.”

He said a great set of doctors had tended to him throughout the AI experience, and told Ripa, “I’ll be having [surgery] here soon. I’m getting prepared for all that. I’m ready to feel better, feel like myself.”

Phillips’ parents told Radar Online their son has been fighting kidney stones for some time.

“He’s doing good right now, but it’s been a long hard struggle for him,” his father, Phillip Phillips Sr., told Radar Online after his son’s win Wednesday night. “I’m so proud of him. He just sucked it up and endured and he overcomes.”

Chronic kidney stones, although common, counts among the most painful urologic disorders.

Kidney stones account for nearly 3 million visits to doctors and more than half a million visits to the emergency rooms each year, according to the National Institutes of Health. Kidney stones, which are hard masses that develop from crystals that separate from dietary minerals in urine, are typically passed through the body in the urine stream.

According to TMZ, multiple sources said that the crooner had returned to Georgia two weeks ago to see his family doctor, who said the singer needed immediate surgery.

TMZ also reported that Phillips’ kidney problems became so severe midseason that physicians put in a stent to temporarily fix the difficulty. Ureteric stents are thin tubes inserted into the ureter to prevent obstruction of urine flow from the kidneys.

This condition can be “very painful,” said Dr. Lewis Teperman, director of transplantation at NYU Langone Medical Center.

“What type of procedure [he gets] depends on the size of the stones and where they are,” said Teperman. “Most individuals live a long and happy life with stones with the occasional bout of pain from passage.”

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Monday
May212012

'Gummy Bear' Breast Implants: The Future of Breast Augmentation Surgery?

Dr. Grant Stevens, a plastic surgeon in Marina Del Rey, Calif., coined the term, "gummy bear breast implant" for a type of silicone implant. (ABC News)(LOS ANGELES) -- Like kids in a candy store, more women are seeking out a type of silicone breast implant that one doctor calls the "gummy bear."

Dr. Grant Stevens, a prominent plastic surgeon in Marina Del Rey, Calif., coined the term "gummy bear breast implant." He said he gave the implants their catchy nickname because when cut in half, the implant is stable and retains its shape, much like the chewy, gummy bear candies.

Stevens is an advocate of the "gummy bears" because he said he believes they look and feel more like natural breasts. He insisted that "gummy bears" are also safer than other types of implants because they have a lower rupture rate.

These new "high-strength silicone gel implants" made by a company called Sientra were approved in March by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. But neither the agency nor the company call them "gummy bears."

"We do not condone the use of such terms," Sientra CEO Hani Zeini told Nightline via email.

Zeini said equating a medical device to a piece of candy trivializes it, and FDA officials are inclined to agree.

Breasts are big business in the United States, with about $1 billion spent on cosmetic breast surgery a year. According to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, more than 300,000 American women undergo cosmetic breast augmentation every year -- up 45 percent since 2000.

Improvements in breast implant technology have had a huge impact on the market in the past. Over the past 15 years, since silicone implants became widely available in the U.S., the number of cosmetic procedures has tripled.

For years, this type of high-strength silicone gel breast implant was only available to patients in the U.S. who were willing to take part in clinical trials through surgeons like Stevens.

For some patients, it's their second breast augmentation surgery. Aubrie Chacon said she wanted to get her breast implants redone because her current ones felt like "weird water" under her skin.

"I would like something that felt more natural," she said. "Not so fake, not so foreign."

Christy Carlton, another one of Stevens's patients, said she got her Sientra breast implants through a clinical trial six years ago, and hasn't had any problems since. She added that her partner didn't know that she had breast augmentation surgery until she told him because she said her breasts looked and felt so natural.

But breast surgery is a sensitive subject. In most cases, it's totally elective and, of course, it is closely tied to the patient's self image. Plus, when any new product is introduced, there is a real issue of safety and there have been problems in the past.

Europe is in the midst of a full scale recall of breast implants manufactured by the French company Poly Implant Prothese. Some of PIP's silicone implants, which were never sold in the U.S., were found to contain industrial-grade silicone gel of the type used in mattresses. While the risk remains unclear, thousands of women around the world had to have their implants removed over concerns that PIP's implants tended to rupture and leak. The company's CEO is now in jail.

The FDA said it had no opinion on whether these Sientra implants are better or worse than the ones already on the market, and the agency said it did not conduct tests to compare different kinds of implants. But FDA officials told Nightline that Sientra's eight-year clinical trial with the Sientra implants, which tested the product on nearly 1,800 women, showed that the implants were safe and effective. Although Stevens swears by what he calls the "gummy bear" implants, other plastic surgeons don't. Dr. Garth Fischer is one of the top plastic surgeons in Beverly Hills and a consultant on the ABC TV show Extreme Makeovers. His clientele includes several celebrities -- he's the plastic surgeon Bruce Jenner turned to correct several bad face-lifts done by other surgeons. Fischer also fixed Lisa Rinna's lips.

Fischer said while he sees the benefits of the "gummy bears," he prefers the conventional round implants, and suggested that surgeons who don't have his skills may use the "gummy bears" as a crutch.

"'Gummy bears' have been around a long time," he said. "[But] I think some doctors need that shape maybe because they can't create it on their own."

Dr. Robin Yuan is another prominent Beverly Hills plastic surgeon and the author of Behind the Mask, Beneath the Glitter, a guide for patients considering a surgeon. He acknowledged that it can be confusing for patients, especially when doctors sell one technique over another, and patients have little basis to judge which approach is best for them.

"You can't say a Rolls Royce is better than a Ferrari," he said. "They're both cars that get you from A to B but they have different characteristics."

"I think there are very few patients who go to a neurosurgeon and ask what drill they're going to use to open their skull," Yuan said. "But they ask that of plastic surgeons. Most of the time, in other professions, they just trust the doctor to do what's appropriate in certain conditions."

Whether patients are considering the "gummy bears" or something else, the bottom line is to find a doctor you trust.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Tuesday
May152012

Quadriplegic Moves Fingers After Nerve-Stealing Surgery

Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis(ST. LOUIS) -- A 71-year-old quadriplegic man can move his fingers after surgeons "stole" healthy nerves from his arm and rerouted them to his hand, according to a new case study.

The man, whose name has not been released, crushed his spinal cord at the C7 vertebrae in the base of his neck in a 2008 motor vehicle accident.  The injury severed the nerve circuits that would send signals from his brain to the muscles in his hands, but it spared nearby nerves that could be coaxed into taking over.

"It's called nerve transfer surgery," said Dr. Ida Fox, assistant professor of plastic and reconstructive surgery at Washington University in St. Louis.  "It's borrowing a nerve that's still working and displacing it into a nerve that isn't working."

People with C7 spinal cord injuries can't move their hands, but they can move their shoulders, elbows and wrists, thanks to nerves that originate above the injury.  To tap into those healthy circuits, Fox and colleagues cut the nerve that controlled the man's brachialis, an arm muscle that helps bend the elbow.  They then attached it to the non-working nerve projecting out to his hand with a tiny stitch the size of a hair.

"We had to sacrifice something that's 'sacrificable,'" said Fox, describing how the biceps and other elbow-bending muscles would pick up the brachialis' slack.

Over six months, the nerve, which is no thicker than a strand of angel hair pasta, grew six inches along the old non-working nerve, reaching the hand muscles at the end.  And with intense physical therapy, the man learned to move his fingers with the nerve that once bent his arm.

"The brain has to be trained to think, 'OK, I used to bend my elbow with this nerve, and now I use it to pinch,'" said Fox.  "We're not changing any of the biomechanics; we're just changing the wiring.  So it's more of a mental game that patients have to play with themselves."

The case study, published Tuesday in the Journal of Neurosurgery, could give surgeons a tricky tool to help spinal cord injury patients hold onto some independence, Fox said.

"These patients have figured out very clever adaptive strategies to get around the fact that their hands don't do what they want them to do.  But they want to be able to do things more quickly without help," said Fox, adding that patients frequently say they wish they could eat without assistive devices.  "This makes stealing that brachialis muscle worth it."

One year after the procedure, the man is able to feed himself bite-size pieces of food.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Thursday
May032012

After 200 Years of Surgery: Cutting to Cure Has Come a Long Way

Keith Brofsky/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- The 3.5-inch tumor in Cynthia Miller's throat threatened to choke her, leaving her no choice but to have it removed.

"I had no idea I was even sick," said Miller, 55, who lives in Maitland, Fla. "I woke up in the middle of the night coughing. … The next thing I knew they were booking emergency surgery."

Instead of radical surgery—which would involved cutting her face, pulling teeth and breaking her jaw—Miller had her tumor removed through her mouth by a miniature robotic arm guided by the surgeon.

"With the robot, there are no cuts anywhere. No breathing tube, no broken bones," said Dr. Bert O'Malley, who pioneered the procedure at the University of Pennsylvania's Head and Neck Cancer Center in Philadelphia. "We go in through the mouth with a high-magnification 3-D camera and very small instruments, like a surgeon's fingers but very tiny, and we're able to remove the tumor without the side effects of traditional surgery."

Side effects include spasms, difficulty with swallowing and speech, not to mention chronic pain.

"The more you disrupt and injure tissue, the greater the risk of dysfunction and chronic problems," said O'Malley.

Today's minimally invasive surgery is far different from the procedures of 200 years ago, when surgeons hacked through skin, muscle and bone briskly and brutally without anesthesia or antisepsis.

"Pain and the always-looming problem of infection restricted the extent of a surgeon's reach," Dr. Atul Gawande, a surgeon at Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston, wrote in a review published Wednesday in the New England Journal of Medicine's 200th anniversary issue.

Even after the advent of anesthesia in 1846, surgeons continued to "choose slashing speed over precision," Gawande wrote, describing a 19th century leg amputation in which the surgeon accidentally cut an assistant's finger along with the patient's limb. "The patient and the assistant both died of sepsis, and a spectator reportedly died of shock, resulting in the only known procedure with a 300 percent mortality," he wrote.

Unlike today's surgeons dressed in sterile scrubs, masks, caps and booties, surgeons of yore wore black Prince Albert coats speckled with pus and dried blood from procedures past. It would take decades for them to recognize the importance of sterility.

Soon after, however, the arsenal of surgical procedures and their success rates quickly grew. From heart procedures to organ transplants to joint replacements, the "invasion of people's bodies for cure" was becoming the norm, Gawande wrote.

American surgeons perform more than 50 million procedures a year, according to the review, meaning the average American can expect to undergo seven operations during his or her lifetime. Miller, who's had four surgeries so far, said she's amazed at how far the field has come.

"I went in on a Friday morning and came home on the Monday," she said, recalling her surprisingly quick and painless recovery. "I'm thoroughly amazed. I'm in awe. Technology and man are coming together to enrich our world in ways that we could never have imagined."

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio







ABC News Radio