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


2018 Smile4Wessex Gala...

2018 Smile4Wessex Gala Dinner Date
We're pleased to announce that the 2018 Smile4Wessex Gala Dinner will take place at the Hilton Ageas Bowl on Saturday 13th October. 'Early Bird' ticket deals are available until 30th June. Please click HERE for full details.

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,...

Smile4Wessex Neuro Open...

Smile4Wessex Neuro Open Day
Please join us for our Smile4Wessex Neuro Open Day on Saturday 2nd June.   We are excited to give you the opportunity to see many of the projects that Smile4Wessex has been able to fund, thanks to your generous support...

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...

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  


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