Amazing medical advances heal wounded troops

September 18, 2012

Synthetic windpipe (credit: Karolinska Institute)

Scientists are growing ears, bone and skin in the lab, and doctors are planning more face transplants and other extreme plastic surgeries. Around the country, the most advanced medical tools that exist are now being deployed to help America’s newest veterans and wounded troops, Huffington Post reports.

In Los Angeles, surgeons used part of Michael Mills’ forehead to rebuild his nose after a bomb disfigured him in Iraq.

In Pittsburgh, doctors used an experimental therapy from pig tissue to help regrow part of a thigh muscle that Ron Strang lost in a blast in Afghanistan.

In Boston, scientists are making plans for the first implants of lab-grown ears for wounded troops after successful experiments in sheep and rats.

In San Antonio and other cities, doctors are testing sprayed-on skin cells and lab-made sheets of skin to heal burns and other wounds. The ingenuity is impressive: One product was developed from foreskin left over from circumcisions.