Surgeon carries out hand and arm transplant operation

23rd November 2007, Comments 0 comments

23 November 2007, Valencia - A Spanish surgeon announced on Thursday that he has successfully performed the second bilateral hand and arm transplant operation ever carried out in Spain, replicating a procedure used for the first time last year.

23 November 2007

Valencia - A Spanish surgeon announced on Thursday that he has successfully performed the second bilateral hand and arm transplant operation ever carried out in Spain, replicating a procedure used for the first time last year.

Dr Pedro Cavadas said that the operation, performed on a 29-year-old man who lost both his hands and part of both forearms in a grenade explosion, had taken place on November 15 in Valencia's La Fe hospital. It is only the 18th such operation to have been performed in the world.

"The patient is doing marvelously well," Cavadas told reporters in a press conference yesterday.

Last year, Cavadas successfully transplanted the hands and part of the forearms of a woman called Alba, who has now regained the use of both. He acknowledged, nonetheless, that the patient who underwent surgery on November 15 may not do quite so well.

"In this case the amputation affected all of the muscles of the forearm so the results are likely to be worse," the surgeon said.

The patient, who has not been named in order to avoid media attention, is now expected to undergo 18 months of rehabilitation and will be forced to take medication for life in order to prevent his immune system from rejecting his new arms.

[Copyright EL PAÍS, SL./ FEDERICO SIMÓN 2007]

Subject: Spanish news

 

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