Three new Freemasons' Research Fellows
In their report to the trustees for the year ended 31 December 2001, the College referred to projects undertaken by three newly appointed Freemasons' Research Fellows.
These three recipients are Mr Robin Garrett-Cox of the Institute of Child Health in London, Mr Sion Glyn-Jones of the Nuffield Orthopaedic Centre in Oxford and Mr Ganesh Kuhan of Hull Royal Infirmary.
They are carrying out research into subjects as diverse as liver failure in new-born babies, osteoarthritis and the incidence of stroke in patients suffering from cancer and heart disease. Infection in new-born babies, particularly those that are premature, is one of the most common causes of illness, resulting in the death of between one and five babies in every thousand. Death is frequently due to failure of the liver and other organs.
Mr Garrett-Cox is exploring the possibility of preventing this liver failure by giving "special" nutrients to new-born babies at the first sign of infection.
Osteoarthritis affects one in five of the population. Hip replacements are a successful and costeffective way of eliminating the associated pain and disability.
However, one in ten procedures fails after ten years, mostly due to polyethylene wear and tear. A new type of polyethylene wears at one-tenth the rate of its standard equivalent in simulations. If repeatable within the human body, it could extend longevity for a hip replacement and reduce the need for further operations on patients.
Mr Glyn-Jones is therefore working on a three-dimensional X-ray technique that can predict whether a hip replacement will perform well within a year of being installed. This will help assess the viability of the new polyethylene.
Stroke is the third most common cause of death, after ischaemic heart disease and cancer. It has an annual incident of five per thousand, and there are 25,000 new cases each year.
Mr Kuhan is working on a surgical procedure known as carotid endarterecetomy in the prevention of stroke in patients dealing with the symptoms of acute narrowing of the main arteries that carry blood to the head.
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