Tooth in Eye Surgery

By Anupum Pant

Back in the 60s a very odd technique was developed by doctors in Italy, as a desperate measure to restore vision in a damaged eye. Their process involved using a tooth from the person’s mouth and putting it in the eye for them to be able to see again. That was in the 60s. The procedure has since been done on hundreds of patients successfully and is still being done. In the US, this procedure was done only in the 2009 for the first time. Sounds weird, but true.

Also known as modified osteo-odonto-keratoprosthesis (or MOOKP) among doctors, is done in 3 basic steps. First, a tooth is removed from the patient’s mouth and a hole is drilled into it. A section of the cheek is then removed to form the soft, mucus tissue around her pupil. The hole is then used to support a prosthetic lens which is used in the eye. Basically, the tooth is used as a framework to put the artificial prosthetic lens in the eye.

It is rarely used, only in desperate cases where there are no less invasive alternatives to fix the eye. Other times donated cornea transplant from a deceased donor can be used. But the tooth in eye surgery has a major advantage over that because in this technique, the cheek and tooth tissue used both belong to the same person and there is very less chance of the immune system rejecting the composite.

via [ABC news]

A Vomit Robot

By Anupum Pant

Microbiologists, in an effort to prevent infection are interested in studying how vomit splashes around a room when someone spews it out unprepared. Even tiny droplets of vomit, as they’ve found, can contain enough amount of microbes to infect others. This demonstration is fairly dangerous to do with actual vomit.

So, they’ve created a robot called vomitting larry which can spew fluorescent liquid (which is harmless). This fluorescent liquid can be seen in black light. Look at how even after good amount of cleaning dangerous amounts of infection containing vomit can still stay around.

Asbestos Filter Cigarettes

By Anupum Pant

Today we know that asbestos is an evil substance. One of the direct diseases it causes is lung cancer. When asbestos fibers get inside the body, they cause genetic damage in cells which grows gradually and cancerous cells start developing. But that’s not it. There’s an increasing agreement among scientists that asbestos exposure is linked with several other kinds of cancers.

Asbestos, when it’s wickedness wasn’t know, used to be a very common substance lying around here and there, is now being replaced with other benign substitutes.

It’s like those times when cigarette smoking used to be advertised on the TV as being healthy. The ads of those times also had doctors recommending a particular brand of cigarettes. Watch some of the videos here.

So, obviously, during the time when smoking and asbestos were cool, they were combined in a single product which had a cumulative coolness coefficient of both asbestos and cigarettes.

There was this brand of of Kent micronite cigarettes which used fibers of asbestos for the filter part of it. These were made by a company called¬†Hollinsworth & Vose Company. The ads said that these filters offered “the greatest health protection” in the history. Apparently, these filters could filter 30% extra tar. About 12 Billion of these cigarettes were sold.

Slowly, the production of these filters was stopped and asbestos was replaced by something benign, in something evil that’d still cause cancer. This brand is sold even today, without the “dangerous part” of asbestos.

I always wonder what all is considered “safe” by the scientists today. It’s only a matter of time that we’ll realize how something very common, ordinary and safe we use every day in our life is a seriously life threatening thing.