Egg-sized tumor in nine-year-old boy's jawbone replaced with leg bone in RARE SURGERY
Doctors recently performed a rare surgery on a nine-year-old boy using bone from his right leg to replace part of his jaw after removing a benign tumor that could have potentially disfigured his face.
Demetri Pristouris, from Brooklyn, New York, had a part of his right jaw replaced with a section of the fibula bone in his lower right leg. His mother Stacy Pristouris said it all began when she noticed that her son's right jaw was swollen this past Thanksgiving. She initially thought it was an allergic reaction to food, but doctors later confirmed it was a growing tumor. Demetri underwent an eight-hour surgery in February at the Cohen Children’s Medical Center at Northwell Health’s Long Island Jewish Hospital on Long Island.
“I was very nervous when I had the surgery. I was scared. I feel much better now,” Demetri of Dyker Heights told the New York Post. Dr David Hirsch, one of the boy's surgeons, told the newspaper it's rare to replace a child's jaw with bones from the leg due to a tumor. “Kids rarely get this type of tumor,” Hirsch, the chairman of oral and maxillofacial surgery at Northwell’s Lenox Hill Hospital in Manhattan, explained. “When we do see such a tumor, it is usually small. His was the largest one we’ve seen in children.”
“The tumor was the size of an egg when they removed it," Demetri's mom told the Post. “I was told his jaw bone wasn’t there. A mass, a tumor was there,” she recalled. “We were told they had to remove the tumor and had to rebuild Demetri’s jaw by taking a bone from his leg.” Hirsch said his team successfully fused Demetri’s fibula bone with the rest of his jaw bone after much of the damage done was removed. While the boy still needs teeth replaced from his surgery, he is already swimming and playing other sports.
Demetri was forced to miss two months of school due to the ordeal, but his mother Stacy is relieved that her son was able to return to classes at the Classic Hellenic Charter School in the spring. “Demetri healed really well,” his doctor remarked, noting that the recurrence rate for such a tumor is 1 percent after the jawbone removal and fibula replacement. On the other hand, the recurrence rate for less invasive surgery is 65 percent.
Speaking of unconventional surgeries, MEAWW previously reported how doctors performed an impressive reconstruction procedure on a woman whose pet pitbull devoured "half her arm" in a vicious attack. Tya Lucas, 41, from Lewisville, Texas was rushed to a hospital and placed on a ventilator for two days. She would end up staying at the hospital for 19 days, with hundreds of stitches across her limbs and five surgeries to remove dead skin. Doctors also performed a sixth operation in which they took some muscle from her back, rolled it up into the shape of a bicep, and attached it to her arm.