updated 4/29/2011 6:46:34 PM ET 2011-04-29T22:46:34

WHAT: Eight-year-old has a new "bionic" arm thanks to Moffitt Cancer Center surgeon Dr. G. Douglas Letson and Shriners Hospitals for Children®-Tampa.

WHEN: Tuesday, May 3 at 1 p.m.

WHERE: Shriners Hospitals for Children® - Tampa
                
12502 USF PINE DRIVE, TAMPA, FL 33612 (USF CAMPUS)

TAMPA, Fla., April 29, 2011 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Eight-year-old Josalyn Kaldenberg has a new "bionic" arm thanks to Moffitt Cancer Center surgeon Dr. G. Douglas Letson and Shriners Hospitals for Children®-Tampa. On Tuesday, Dr. Letson performed the first expandable total humerus replacement in the United States on Josalyn.

"This is a first-of-its-kind procedure using a Stanmore expandable endoprosthesis in the United States with huge results," said Dr. Letson, head of Moffitt's Sarcoma Program who is a consulting staff member with Shriners Hospitals for Children®-Tampa. "Josalyn is a piano player, and our biggest goal is to have her back to playing the piano again. Kids are amazing, and I'm confident that Josalyn will be playing again soon."

Facing the prospect of having her right arm amputated, Josalyn and her parents found new hope through Shriners Hospitals for Children®-Tampa and Moffitt. Josalyn, from Woodward, Iowa, was diagnosed with osteosarcoma of her right humerus in December 2010. She received oncology treatment in Iowa, but her options were limited an her parents were determined to keep her arm.

"We kept searching for alternatives because we needed to know we did everything we could," said Heidi Kaldenberg, Josalyn's mother.

Pediatric hematologist Christopher Rokes of Blank Children's Hospital in Des Moines, Iowa, worked with Medicaid, Letson and Shriners Hospitals for Children®-Tampa to coordinate Josalyn's care, flights, implant and surgery.

Dr. Letson performed the nearly eight-hour procedure at Shriners Hospitals for Children®-Tampa, where Josalyn is recovering this week. The collaboration of Shriners Hospitals for Children®-Tampa, which provides expert pediatric orthopaedic care for children regardless of  their families' ability to pay, and Moffitt's Sarcoma Program enabled Josalyn to have this groundbreaking limb salvage procedure.

"Bringing together the medical expertise of both Shriners Hospitals for Children®-Tampa and Moffitt has changed the life of this young girl," said Dennis P. Grogan, M.D., Shriners Hospitals for Children®-Tampa chief of staff.

Josalyn lost some of the muscle in her right shoulder when Dr. Letson removed the tumor. She's expected to experience weakness in the shoulder and elbow, but she's thrilled to still have her arm. She will begin aggressive physical therapy in about two months and will eventually have her prosthetic lengthened with minimally invasive surgery as she grows.

Dr. Letson, Josalyn and her parents will be available Tuesday, May 3 at 1 p.m. at Shriners Hospitals for Children®-Tampa to discuss her cutting-edge procedure and prognosis. For interviews, contact Bethanne Demas with ShrinersHospitals for Children® at (813) 975-7115 or Patty Kim with Moffitt at (813) 745-7322.

Media Inquiries:

Jamie Parker, Public Relations Specialist
Shriners Hospitals for Children
(813) 972-2250 x7642 FAX (813) 975-7103
Email:  jparker@shrinenet.org

Patty Kim, Media Relations Coordinator
Moffitt Cancer Center
(813) 745-7322 | FAX  (813) 745-1380
Email: patty.kim@moffitt.org

This information was brought to you by Cision http://www.cisionwire.com
 

© Copyright 2012, GlobeNewswire, Inc. All Rights Reserved

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