After having her ear removed to stop the spread of cancer, doctors at Johns Hopkins Institute decided Sherrie Walter needed a new one. The doctors used bone, cartilage, skin, and arteries to build a new ear, and then stored it under her forearm to allow it to grow.
The ear is in fact an exact replica. After having it surgically attached to her head, the doctors added an internal hearing aid. Walter was filled with hope and relief during the entire ordeal.
“When my doctors told me reconstruction was possible, I thought it was too good to be true; it sounded like science fiction. Just learning that reconstructing my ear was doable gave me sufficient physical and emotional strength, as well as the confidence I needed to go through with the surgeries.”
Finally a point to having so much free limb space. The days when peoples’ arms and legs are lined with spare noses, ears, fingers and toes is quickly approaching.
Johns Hopkins: Johns Hopkins Sugeons Use Woman’s Own Tissue to Rebuild Ear Lost to Cancer
Huffington Post: Ear Reconstruction Utilizes Patient’s Tissue, Forearm In Innovative Surgery