American - Colombian Restorative and Corrective Orthopedics Foundation
Lakeland Doctor Travels to Colombia to Help Treat Children
Lakeland ledger - PUBLISHED SUNDAY, DECEMBER 22, 2002
From 2002 to 2007 I traveled to Cartagena, Colombia to participate as one the lead surgeons with the American - Colombian Orthopedic foundation. This foundation main focus was corrective and restoration of upper and lower long bone deformities using the Ilizerov method.
During this time period I travel twelve time to Cartagena and saw almost one thousand patients in clinic (mostly children) and performed almost one hundred and fifty surgeries
All of the surgeries were hospital based at a private hospital in Cartagena, Colombia. The Colombian foundation director is Dr. Simancas, the head Cartagena orthopedic surgeon. A typical trip was to arrive thursday night, see patients in the clinic Friday, perform surgery in two OR's Saturday, and return to the United Staes on Sunday.
Group picture of the surgeons
Pictured here from left to right is myself, Dr. George Vito (American foundation director) and Dr. Simancas (Colombian foundation director).
The child above is a typical case from Cartagena. This child has Blont's disease. Blount's disease occurs in young children and adolescents. The cause is unknown but is thought to be due to the effects of weight on the growth plate. The inner part of the shin bone, just below the knee, fails to develop normally. Unlike bowlegs, which tend to straighten as the child develops, Blount's disease slowly gets worse. It can cause severe bowing of one or both legs.
Surgical correction involved cutting the shin bone to place it in the proper position with external fixation (Ilizarov). The patient did quite well, transitioned into cast then back to full walking.