A New Face for Nicole

More about Nicole's Miracle Surgery

Throughout their careers, husband-and-wife surgeons David Jimenez, M.D., and Constance Barone, M.D., of the University of Missouri University Hospitals and Clinics, had performed the standard invasive surgery for craniosynostosis on countless children. Dr. Barone says the idea for the endoscopic procedure that they later began using was inspired by the birth of the couple's son four years ago. "Having my own child made me realize I wouldn't have let him go through the very procedure I had performed countless times if he had had craniosynostosis." She and her husband developed a simpler procedure called endoscopic strip craniectomy. The surgeons thread a tiny camera through a small incision in the scalp to perform microsurgery inside the head, using a video screen as a guide. Endoscopy is less expensive, reduces recovery time and blood loss, and can be performed on very young babies.

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