HEALTHBEAT

• Dr. R. Adam Noel, associate professor of pediatrics at LSU Health Sciences Center New Orleans, is a pediatric GI specialist who practices at Children’s Hospital and has been on a mission to warn parents of the danger of swallowing dangerous magnet beads that can be found in children’s toys. Dr. Noel began collecting cases from around the country after he saw two in a short period of time. These magnets, adapted as “toys,” exert the strongest magnetic force on earth. Each bead can attract a weight of 50 pounds. When they are swallowed separately, they attract each other, destroying the tissue between them. Symptoms don’t appear until the damage has been done. The case that provoked Dr. Noel to investigate how and where these toys are sold, whether or not the labels contain appropriate warnings and how aware people are of the dangers these magnetic beads pose was Braylon Jordan’s, a toddler who swallowed eight beads, which are sold in sets of hundreds.

Jordan  is currently recovering  after spending time in the ICU at Children’s; he’ll reportedly require an intestine transplant.

• Ochsner Medical Center is the first and only hospital in the state that uses Near-Infrared Fluorescence (NIRF) Guidance for the da Vinci Si robotic surgical system, used to spare kidney tissue during cancerous tumor removal. This technology, also known as “Firefly,” functions by using fluorescent imaging that offers image-guided identification of key anatomical landmarks, allowing surgeons to see and assess anatomy better than with the naked eye; doctors are also able to differentiate between malignant and normal tissue during surgery with greater ease.

Ochsner is also investigating the application in prostate cancer treatment, according to an Ochsner press release.

• New Orleanian Dr. J. Christian Winters, the H. Eustis Reily Professor and Chairman of Urology at LSU Health Sciences Center New Orleans, was recently elected as president of the Society of Urodynamics, Female Pelvic Medicine and Urogenital Reconstruction. The Society was founded to improve the art and science of urology through basic and applied clinical research, and it is dedicated to fostering interdisciplinary dialogue and communication, promotion of the development of young scientists and the development of scientific, educational and professional activities through publications. Dr. Winters will serve a two-year term.

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