Disabled Chicken Recovering from Surgery in Preparation for Prosthesis

GRAFTON, Mass. (August 6, 2015)— Clinicians at Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University report that Cicely, a five month old chicken, is in stable condition after undergoing surgery on the morning of Wednesday, August 5, to partially amputate a bone which was causing Cicely’s right leg to bend in the wrong direction. 

The Cummings School’s surgical team, led by Clinical Assistant Professor Emi Knafo, who has a special interest in avian orthopedics, reports that the young chicken is doing well but has a long way to go.

During the surgery, while Cicely was under general anesthesia, the Cummings team made a copy of her good foot via CT scan. That scan will enable personnel at Tufts’ School of Engineering to create a 3D-printed, plastic prosthetic that will be put on later this month. Veterinarians and engineers will collaborate to ensure that the final design is as comfortable and mechanically useful as possible, using materials with different strength and flexibility combinations.

Specialists in Cummings School's Zoological Companion Animal Service caution that today’s surgery is only part of a complex multi-step process in Cicely's treatment. 

Clinicians are not available for interviews at this time and updates are not anticipated until later this month. High-resolution photos and video are available by request.


About Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University
Founded in 1978 in North Grafton, Mass., Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University is internationally esteemed for academic programs that impact society and the practice of veterinary medicine; three hospitals and two clinics that combined log more than 80,000 animal cases each year; and groundbreaking research that benefits animal, public, and environmental health. 

About the Tufts University School of Engineering
Located on Tufts’ Medford/Somerville campus, the Tufts University School of Engineering offers a rigorous engineering education in a unique environment that blends the intellectual and technological resources of a world-class research university with the strengths of a top-ranked liberal arts college. Close partnerships with Tufts’ excellent undergraduate, graduate and professional schools, coupled with a long tradition of collaboration, provide a strong platform for interdisciplinary education and scholarship. The School of Engineering’s mission is to educate engineers committed to the innovative and ethical application of science and technology in addressing the most pressing societal needs, to develop and nurture twenty-first century leadership qualities in its students, faculty, and alumni, and to create and disseminate transformational new knowledge and technologies that further the well-being and sustainability of society in such cross-cutting areas as human health, environmental sustainability, alternative energy, and the human-technology interface

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