Say goodbye to the scalpel, as science believes there’s a better way to tackle invasive surgeries. Disclaimer: It involves electrical current up your bits.
It is a truth universally acknowledged that surgeries fucking hurt. However, a new type of medical procedure could help replace some of the pain the circles around invasive surgery with the application of electrical current and a 3-D printer. Ostensibly, doctors have figured out how to soften and re-shape cartilage without making a single incision. This could theoretically significantly shorten the recovery time for a whole raft of medical procedures.
The research, described in an American Chemical Society (ACS) press release, puts forward the theory that if the cartilage is held in place as it hardens, the technique could be used to perform a nose job or other previously surgical procedures sans scalpels.
According to the press release, the scientists arrived at the new surgical procedure almost by accident. Previously, one scientist on the team heated cartilage it with infrared lasers. But that was too expensive and often killed the heated tissue, so they tried electricity instead.
The electrical charge worked, but not by heating the cartilage. Instead, it unbalanced the electrically-charged ions that stiffen cartilage, loosening it up and letting it be reshaped.
Aside from cosmetic surgeries that would reshape people’s noses or other features, the scientists envision their new technique being used to restore function to stiff joints or to repair people’s deviated septums. Down the road, the technique may be used on more than cartilage — perhaps even to repair corneas and fix eyesight.
But given that the team has only tested their electrical technique on a rabbit — so as a recent comedy Twitter page puts it, tested on people or it didn’t happen.