LEAD STORY: "Honey, I think I have diarrhea. Have you seen the remote?"
But What If the Device Falls Into the Wrong Hands? A 55-year-old British man whose bowel was ruptured in a nearly catastrophic traffic accident has been fitted with a bionic sphincter that opens and closes with a remote controller. Ged Galvin had originally endured 13 surgeries in a 13-week hospital stay and had grown frustrated with using a colostomy bag until surgeon Norman Williams of the Royal London Hospital proposed the imaginative operation. Dr. Williams, who was interviewed along with Galvin for a November feature in London's Daily Mail, wrapped a muscle transplanted from Galvin's leg around the sphincter and attached electrodes to tighten or loosen the muscle's grip. [Daily Mail, 11-10-09, 11-13-09]