Paraplegic man walks with aid of exoskeleton | Nerve allograft saves war veteran's leg | Ky. middle schoolers design prosthetic hand for classmate
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January 2, 2014
AOPA In Advance SmartBrief
News for Professionals in the Orthotics, Prosthetics and Pedorthics Profession

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Paraplegic man walks with aid of exoskeleton
Brett Hannaford of South Carolina, paralyzed in a small-plane crash, is walking again with the aid of the ReWalk exoskeleton device, provided through Carolinas Rehabilitation in Charlotte, N.C. "He'll be our first person to be completely independent on the device," said physical therapist Ashley Clark, who has worked with Hannaford for six months. WWLP-TV (Springfield, Mass.)/CNN (1/2)
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Science and Technology
Nerve allograft saves war veteran's leg
During an ambush in Afghanistan, Navy corpsman Edward Bonfiglio was shot in his left leg and sustained injury to his sciatic nerve. Doctors told him that he would need either an amputation or a nerve graft, and Bonfiglio opted for the latter. Using AxoGen's Avance Nerve Graft, Bonfiglio's leg was saved. Although rehabilitation took about a year, Bonfiglio can now walk and jog, and he is hoping to qualify for the Paralympics in track and field events including discus, shot put and javelin. blog (12/31), The Trentonian (Trenton, N.J.) (12/31)
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Ky. middle schoolers design prosthetic hand for classmate
Students in the engineering class at Turkey Foot Middle School in Edgewood, Ky., are constructing a prosthetic hand using a 3D printer for a seventh-grade classmate, Makayla Murphy, who was born without a lower left arm. "Around the world, kids between the ages of 11-14 are adding to the well of human knowledge and invention," said teacher Dwayne Humphrey. "We're trying to engage students in work that is meaningful." The State Journal-Register (Springfield, Ill.)/The Associated Press (12/30)
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Medical News
Lower diabetes, heart risk seen with modest weight loss in women
Middle-aged women who maintained a weight loss of 10% or more over two years attained significant declines in total cholesterol, triglycerides, insulin, and glucose and inflammation markers, reducing their risk of cardiovascular disease and diabetes, a study indicated. The results were published in the Journal of the American Heart Association. (12/30)
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Experimental injection may one day reduce need for mastectomies
Harvard University researchers were able to block HoxA1, a specific gene strongly associated with breast cancer, when they injected mice with an RNA agent. The treatment could potentially block the effects of genes that predispose women to certain breast cancers and reduce or eliminate the need for such invasive treatments as mastectomies. The findings appeared in the journal Science Translational Medicine. (1/1)
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Legislative and Regulatory
Sebelius: More than 2.1M enrolled in ACA plans as of Dec. 28
HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius said Tuesday that more than 2.1 million people have enrolled nationwide in private health insurance plans under the Affordable Care Act as of Dec. 28. The number includes those who signed up in 14 state-run exchanges as well as those who enrolled via Reuters (12/31), The New York Times (tiered subscription model) (12/31), The Wall Street Journal (tiered subscription model) (12/31)
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Business and Finance
6 ways to get more done
Read full story
A small-business owner's responsibilities can seem overwhelming, but there are strategies to make sure the most important tasks get done, consultant Dana Brownlee says. Among Brownlee's suggestions are to limit the number of items on your to-do list, to restrict the number of times you log into your e-mail account and to remove unimportant tasks from your schedule. (12/30)
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Breaking news from AOPA
AOPA's first 2014 Coding & Billing Seminar is going to New Orleans this February. Get the latest information on medical policies, documentation and compliance--register your staff today! In the news, the Affordable Care Act grace period holds peril for providers--read all about it! Be sure to check out AOPA's 2014 Audio Conference Series and new online Business Education Programs for New Year's resolution credit opportunities! All of this and more in today's AOPA Breaking News.
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Upcoming events
Jan. 8: New Year, New Opportunity: Are You Billing For All That You Can? (Telephone audio conference)
Learn more or register online.
Feb. 12: Billing for Diabetic & Orthopedic Shoes, Mastectomy Services, and Surgical Dressings (Telephone audio conference) Learn more or register online.
March 12: The ABC's of Audits: What to Expect and How to Respond (Telephone audio conference)
Learn more or register online.
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-- J.M. Barrie,
Scottish writer and dramatist
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