Sunday, January 3, 2016

A New Year filled with Hope

Happy New Year!

My hope for 2016 is much progress towards our understanding of birth differences of the upper extremity. 

My primary resolution is to continue our research in St Louis at Washington University, St. Louis Childrens Hospital, and the Shriners Hospital for Children.  We have a number of exciting projects underway including:
  1. The CoULD (Congenital Upper Limb Difference) Database.  This is a partnership with Boston Childrens Hospital (and in 2017, at least 2 additional institutions) to identify and tracking children with birth differences over time.
  2. Projects examining treatment outcomes for
    1. Hypoplastic thumb
    2. Arthrogryposis
    3. Other congenital differences
  3. Several projects examining outcome instruments for kids (PROMIS, PODCI, etc)

My other resolution is to post to this blog more regularly.  My goal is once a week and I hope to better keep to this pace in 2016.

Finally, I am intrigued by the potential of 3D printing as it can benefit kids with upper extremity differences.  We have one publication in print on this topic which is described HERE.  We have another manuscript which has been submitted for publication describing some notable advances. While there is a great deal in the popular press on the topic, there is very little in the literature.  One additional manuscript can be found HERE.  

I have become somewhat more knowledgable on the Magic Arms effort.  This is a 3D printed device (called Magic Arms or the WREX) which can help kids overcome gravity for functional improvement. 

The organization attempting to increase our understanding and the availability of these devices is MAGIC ARMS- their website is worth a look and is also a new Link for my blog.

Happy New Year.

Charles A. Goldfarb, MD
My Bio at Washington University
congenitalhand@wudosis.wustl.edu

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