21st Century Medicine:
Produced For: Discovery
Format: Color, NTSC
Genre: Medicine, Technology
21st Century Medicine (2003)
Produced By: Advanced Medical Prod.
Directed By: Bill Hayes
Written By: Kirk
From robots assisting in hip and knee replacement surgeries to
a microrobot no bigger than a comma, the quest for better medical
tools is never ending. What once seemed science fiction is now
becoming fact. In this episode of 21st Century Medicine, Betty
Kelepecz tells us how a total body scan detected her kidney cancer
in time to save her life. Now, her brother, who is concerned about
chest pains will have a scan. At the Hershey Medical Center, we
watch a surgeon train his young resident for a surgery via a computer
simulator which allows a sense of touch. And at Johns Hopkins
we meet engineers and doctors working together to build robots
ATHLETES: BACK IN THE GAME: In sports
performance labs and clinics across the country, as well as the
US Olympic Training Center in Colorado, we explore the latest
technology in treating and preventing sports injuries. We find
out why females are more prone to ACL injuries. We watch a promising
professional baseball player have his shoulder "shrink-wrapped"
in an attempt to heal his tendons without surgery. We investigate
the use of a "virtual knee" which allows doctors to
plan their surgery before making the first cut and we hear the
story of Adam Taliaferro's miraculous recovery from a near paralyzing
EMERGENCY MEDICINE: In a dramatic emergency
simulation, we watch as emergency medical technicians, search
and rescue teams and doctors train together in preparation for
the next natural disaster. With the aid of a $250,000 anatomically
correct dummy that breathes, speaks, responds to medication and
even panics, we explore the latest field technology used in emergency
situations. We also hear from two heart attack survivors whose
lives were saved by the quick action of bystanders who had access
to AED's, automated external defibrillators. No bigger than a
laptop computer, the AED is designed for use by laypeople (even
children) when confronted with a cardiac emergency.
HUMAN HARDWARE: The human body is a
machine and like all machines, its moving parts can wear out.
In this episode of 21st Century Medicine, we view a finger joint
replacement for a hand crippled by arthritis. We also profile
two patients undergoing back surgery. One will receive an experimental
artificial disc that is in clinical trials, while the other will
undergo the traditional fusion. We follow a 58 year old man through
a total knee replacement surgery. And Julie Marshall, a young
woman thrown from her horse, must decide between a total hip replacement
and an experimental procedure to "resurface" her injured
hip, a surgery which could prevent her from someday needing a
HEAVY WEIGHT SOLUTIONS: David Smith
weighs 600 pounds and knows he will die if he doesn't lose weight.
Cindy Levy has tried every diet available, but still weighs 300
pounds. We'll see David and Cindy undergo two of the latest controversial
surgeries for weight loss. We'll also travel to Texas and visit
a weight control program for children and to France to juxtapose
the European lifestyle with the American lifestyle. This program
explores the complex social, psychological and biological factors
that contribute to our global fat epidemic.
The stakes in the race to find new gene therapies are high. Patients
with diseases as common as hemophilia and as rare as SCIDS (the
bubble boy disease) have been offered hope of a genetic cure.
Through the poignant stories of young hemophiliacs to the joyful
story of a full recovery of a toddler born with virtually no immune
system, we explore the advances of genetic therapy available today.