The LESS Institute Gives Back: Jamaica’s First A-CIFT SoloFuse-P Case

By Abagail Sullivan


On July 3, 2015 Dr. Kingsley R. Chin of the LESS Institute in Florida and Jamaican Neurosurgeon Dr. Franz Pencle performed a Less Exposure Surgery procedure on a middle age, male patient who suffered from severe myelopathy (spinal cord compression) due to a progressive degenerative disorder. The procedure took place at Cornwall Regional Hospital in Montego Bay, Jamaica. Before surgery, the patient was incapacitated. “He was basically quadriplegic,” Dr. Fabio Pencle, a LESS Institute Research Fellow who supported the case says. “On his strength test, he scored a 1/5 throughout all limbs –which means he could barely flicker his digits.” Dr. Fabio Pencle believes that the patient survived because of treatment. “Patients with similar symptoms demised because they didn’t receive timely treatment,” says Dr. Fabio Pencle.

Dr. Chin, Dr. Franz Pencle and Dr. Fabio Pencle donated their time for the case and SpineFrontier donated the SoloFuse hardware. The Less Exposure Surgery (LES) procedure was performed through a midline cervical incision, dissection to expose the affected level and a discectomy using rongeurs and burr. A DBM packed A-CIFT SoloFuse was placed and fixed with screws. This was the first case a standalone implant in Jamaica. It was also the first outpatient spine surgery done at Cornwall Hospital. The patient could sit upright twelve hours after surgery, and he tested 5/5 on a strength test in the upper limbs and 4/5 in the lower limbs –indicating that he had significant improvement in less than 24 hours.

About SpineFrontier’s A-CIFT™ SoloFuse-P™

The A-CIFT SoloFuse-P standalone Less Exposure Surgery system features a simple dual screw construct, a large graft window, large diameter screws, and slim, agile instrumentation. Its zero-profile and all PEEK-OPTIMA Natural design minimizes tissue disruption.

The 2017 Sugar Cane Ball

By Abagail Sullivan

This past Saturday, my lovely wife Vanessa and I were fortunate enough to attend the annual Sugar Cane Ball in Jamaica, an evening of support for local upstanding charitable organizations. The Ball, hosted by Hanover Charities at Round Hill Hotel & Villas, consisted of dinner, dancing, and celebration for one of the largest charitable operations in Western Jamaica.

The Sugar Cane Ball “Diamond Jubilee” commemorated 60 years of the Hanover Charities organization and its contributions to the community.

Since 1957, Hanover Charities has been devoted to improving the health, welfare, and education of the Hanover Parish. With funds serving copious efforts, Hanover Charities promotes programs that feed school children, the elderly, and the indigent, as well as those that provide invaluable health services and financial aid, and encourage positive values.

The Ball has become a well known social event for celebrities – including regulars Ralph Lauren and family – homeowners, and Round Hill Hotel & Villas and Tryall Golf Club of Jamaica visitors, with immeasurable funds surfacing from this single night of support.

The Hanover Charities movement began when Willy Delisser became Custos of Hanover, and he and his wife Ida began implementing positive additions and change in their community. Since its inception, two energetic chairladies have brought great positivity to the operation. Sandy Morris, chair from 1992 to 2001, provided approachability, living in Jamaica amongst the projects and those involved. After Morris’s death, Paula Watkins chaired from 2001 to 2006, providing impressive fundraising efforts for the operation. Katrin Casserly has since taken over, offering a close-to-home approach because of her Jamaican naturalization. Being able to relate to your community and holding close ties to the charities you are supporting are aspects so valuable to the success of any operation.

With no paid staff, Hanover Charities is run strictly by volunteers. And after this evening of coming together, we can see how. Through their site, you can read their amazing history and donate to the Hanover Charities operation today.