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Charitable Support for the Wessex Neurological Centre
Enhancing the range and quality of patient care and sponsoring pioneering research


Charity Golf Day at Remedy...

Charity Golf Day at Remedy Oak GC
We're delighted to announce that we are again returning to Remedy Oak Golf Club, a firm favourite among our golfing friends, for what will be our 5th charity golf day at this truly magnificent course. Our host, Bruce Woollard,...

These Boots Were Made...

These Boots Were Made for Walking
For most people, completing a 60km charity walk would probably put them off the idea of doing anything similar for a while. But for Graham Hayes, who completed just that distance when he took on the longest of the ‘Just...

Rob's Family Fundraiser

Rob's Family Fundraiser
Rob Langman is no stranger to taking on a challenge for Smile4Wessex and had no hesitation in also volunteering his brother-in-law Dave, and nephew DJ, to join him in this years FebBrainairy. They were ably assisted by his two children,...

Kiri's Close Shave for Epilepsy

Kiri's Close Shave for Epilepsy
Having recently undergone surgery for Epilepsy, Kiri MacDonald-Jones bravely agreed to lose her locks for FebBrainairy 2018. Supporting Kiri was her husband Darryl, good friend Helen Webster, who is also a dedicated supporter...

SPA / Daily Echo Property...

SPA / Daily Echo Property Ball
Huge thanks to all at the Daily Echo / Southampton Property Association for choosing Smile4Wessex to benefit from their annual Charity Ball. It was a great evening and, as the pic below shows, a tremendous amount was raised...

Brave febBRAINairy volunteers...

Brave febBRAINairy volunteers raise over £11,000
A total of 11 brave souls volunteered to have their heads shaved for our inaugural 'febBRAINairy' fundraising event, collectively raising a quite incredible £11,182 for Smile4Wessex. Throughout February (and into March),...

Linda’s Life Turns Full...

Linda’s Life Turns Full (Epileptic) Circle!
When Linda Littlechild, then 38, was first diagnosed with Epilepsy it was not only a daunting time for her, but the whole Littlechild family. It was also the beginning of a difficult and sometimes frightening journey, but one which...

'Wall of Smiles' Launched

'Wall of Smiles' Launched
We are delighted to announce details of the Smile4Wessex 'Wall of Smiles'. For the full story of this new initiative please click Wall of Smiles  

You Smile, We Smile,...

You Smile, We Smile, They Smile - Promo Video Launched
We're delighted to reveal the new promotional video about Smile4Wessex - You Smile, We Smile, They Smile.  You may find it moving, emotional, uplifting, inspirational, or a combination of all those things, but we hope...


Revolutionary Microscope Sheds New Light on Neurosurgery

In 2011 the Wessex Neurological Centre became the first centre in the UK to install a new generation of neurosurgical operating microscope, equipped with revolutionary fluorescence imaging technology.

The Leica M720/OH5, purchased following a successful Smile4Wessex appeal raised the near £200,000 needed, is one of the most advanced neurosurgical operating microscopes available, thanks in part to its unique Horizontal Optics Technology. Offering significant improvement in surgeon comfort, Horizontal Optics also provide a substantial gain in free working distance for both cranial and spinal cases, allowing unobstructed access to the surgical area. But it’s the inclusion of both FL400 and FL800 Fluorescence Imaging Technology which turns this particular ‘scope into a truly cutting-edge addition to the already impressive array of specialist medical kit in use at the Centre.

Under FL800 Near-Infra-Red (NIR) light, a harmless dye injected into the patient’s bloodstream during surgery fluoresces in such a way as to enable the surgeon to clearly visualise blood-flow in brain tissue surrounding the surgical area. FL800 Fluorescence imaging makes it possible for even small arteries and veins to be visualised through the optics of the Leica M720/OH5, or displayed on the high-definition screen mounted on the unit. This ability to monitor real-time blood-flow in tissue and vessels during surgery can lead to reductions in the duration of surgical procedures and improved surgical outcomes for patients.

The FL400 module again reacts to a dye ingested by the patient, but in this case it is cancerous cells in particular grades of brain or spinal tumours that are affected. Under the FL400 fluorescent light, the cancerous cells glow, making it far easier for the surgeon to distinguish good tissue from that which needs to be removed, leading to greatly improved resection success, which in turn reduces re-growth rates.

The new microscope offers a number of additional features, including full High-Definition recording of the images the surgeon sees through the optics – particularly useful for reviewing the procedure post-operatively, and in the training of the next generation of neurosurgeons. Consultant Neurosurgeons at the WNC, such as Mr Owen Sparrow FRCS, are understandably delighted to have the use of this technology. “The Leica M720/OH5 offers numerous advantages over previous generations of operating microscopes, but the addition of FL800 Fluorescence Imaging brings the prospect of a quantum leap in the real-time information available to surgeons” comments Mr Sparrow. “This in turn promises significant benefits for our patients - benefits which would not have been possible but for the phenomenal support generated via the Smile4Wessex Appeal.”

See also:

Smile4Wessex Children's Neuro Centre

Intra-Operative Nerve Monitoring

Paediatric Video Telemetry (PVT) Suite

The Smile4Rich Ambulance

Auto-Tilt Sigma Physiotherapy Chair