3D printing to be used in surgery to repair teenager’s shattered skull after Cape Byron cliff accident


Published

June 16, 2019 09: 10: 44

A teen who shattered his skull falling from a cliff at Cape Byron in northern New South Wales will go through surgery to have a piece of 3D printing fitted to his harmed skull.

Bottom line:

  • Connor Meldrum, 15, shattered one side of his skull, driving bone pieces his brain when he plunged 15 metres from a cliff while climbing up around the Cape Byron headland
  • Emergency situation cosmetic surgeons decided to leave that part of the skull open, enabling his brain to swell outwards —a choice that conserved the teenager’s life
  • Now having actually recuperated well up until now, Connor will go through surgery to have actually fitted a custom-made 3D-printed piece of synthetic skull that imitates the residential or commercial properties of living bone

Fifteen-year-old Connor Meldrum will go through the surgery at the Mater Health Center in Brisbane today.

The custom-printed area of skull is made from a high-density permeable polyethylene product that imitates the residential or commercial properties of living bone.

Mater Medical facility neurosurgeon Rob Campbell stated the technology was world class.

“It mimics natural bone with its elastic capability and strength, allowing tissue to grow in and incorporate the implant to the skull,” Dr Campbell stated.

The technology has actually been established by a Melbourne-based biomedical business and commercialised in the previous year with the aid a Federal Federal government grant.

Catastrophe leads to journey of hope and healing

Connor’s journey started while he was socializing with his buddy Scott in Byron Bay on a bright Saturday in March.

The kids made a spontaneous choice to climb around the Cape Byron headland.

They quickly discovered themselves in a position where it was too high to return down.

The shale cliff paved the way and Connor fell 15 metres onto the rocks listed below.

Scott handled to call triple absolutely no, then sticks to the cliff for 3 hours, while 2 anglers who saw Connor fall went to the kids’ support till a rescue helicopter showed up.

On the other hand, Connor’s mum Kim Goodrick had actually been attempting to call him, and resorted to a phone app to track his place.

“I came around the corner of the Lighthouse Road and there was a wall of emergency vehicles,” Ms Goodrick stated.

“I just knew something had happened to him.”

Life-saving emergency situation surgery

Dr Campbell explained Connor’s injuries as terrible and dangerous.

One side of his skull was shattered, driving bone pieces into the left side of his brain.

Dr Campbell stated a choice by emergency situation cosmetic surgeons at the Gold Coast Health Center to leave Connor’s skull open, enabling his brain to swell outwards, conserved the teenager’s life.

Connor’s daddy David Meldrum stated the very first days, when Connor stayed in a coma, were the darkest time.

“At this stage we weren’t even sure if Connor would survive, and if he did survive, he had done an awful lot of damage to his brain,” Mr Meldrum stated.

However over the previous 3 months, Connor’s development has surprised everybody.

His moms and dads felt the very first ray of hope when he emerged from his coma and his very first word was a completely proper curse, provided the situations.

“It’s been an miraculous recovery for Connor,” Dr Campbell stated.

His capability to speak, check out and play the piano have actually all returned.

The group dealing with Connor’s continuous rehab think part of his development can be associated to his decision.

“He never ceases to amaze us,” speech therapist Nicola Hilton stated.

“I guess he puts in 150 per cent.”

Like any mum, Ms Goodrick is simply pleased to still have her boy.

“From the worst possible situation, I think we have the best possible outcome,” she stated.

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