Achilles tendon:

Achilles tendinitis is inflammation,
irritation, and swelling of the Achilles
tendon (the tendon that connects the
muscles of the calf to the heel).


ULTRASOUND GUIDED PROBE
CURES TENNIS ELBOW IN 15
MINUTES. IT IS ALSO APPLICABLE
FOR ACHILLES TENDON
A new  procedure, called FAST
(focused aspiration of scar tissue), is
performed in the Ambulatory Surgical
Center at the Medical Arts and
Research Center, a University of
Texas Medicine location in San
Antonio.

FAST uses an ultrasound-guided
probe the size of a toothpick to reach
the exact area of the elbow where
dead tissue is causing pain. The probe
liquefies the bad tissue, runs fluid
through it and sucks it out.

FAST requires no surgical incision and
is inserted through the skin after only
local anesthetic with the patient fully
awake. A console emits a patented
and optimized form of energy to a
handpiece with a needlelike tip that
specifically breaks up and removes
damaged tissue. The aspirated
damaged tissue is collected in a bag
and the entire device is then discarded.

Bernard Morrey, M.D., clinical
professor with UT Medicine  performed
the procedures on  more than 20 other
patients worldwide. Because of his
stature in orthopaedic medicine, Dr.
Morrey was asked to lead a clinical trial
that demonstrated FAST's safety and
effectiveness. He is the personal
physician to President George H.W.
and Barbara Bush.

"Tennis elbow, like all forms of tendon
pain, is an overuse syndrome," Dr.
Morrey said. "It is a very common
problem that had no good solution. We
needed a way to intervene earlier in
patients' care, to change the nature of
the disease and get the people back to
work. It has great potential to be a truly
cost-effective intervention."

He added: "There is great interest in
the orthopaedic and sports community
in this new intervention, in large
measure because it appears, to date,
to be extremely safe and well tolerated,
as well as effective. Without wanting to
sound too enthusiastic this early in the
process, the results to date are almost
unbelievable."

The therapy, developed by Tenex
Health Inc.  is also being employed with
good results to relieve plantar fasciitis
of the heel, and pain from the Achilles
tendon.



OTHER DEVELOPMENTS
VETCELL UK       
Repair with stem cells by VetCell (UK)
in planned trials.