Surgeon swaps patient's right hand for left

4th June 2007, Comments 0 comments

4 June 2007, VALENCIA - The Spanish surgeon who several months ago performed a successful transplant of forearms on a Colombian woman, has executed another pioneering operation by changing a man's right hand into his left.

4 June 2007

VALENCIA - The Spanish surgeon who several months ago performed a successful transplant of forearms on a Colombian woman, has executed another pioneering operation by changing a man's right hand into his left.

Dr. Pedro Cavadas told Efe that the patient was unable to do any work with his hands, since he had been missing his left hand for 40 years and three years ago suffered a stroke that paralyzed the right side of his body.

The surgery, performed on April 29 in the Virgin of Comfort Hospital in the Mediterranean city of Valencia, is the first of its kind in the world and will allow the man to use his hand "reasonably well" after a few months.

Cavadas said that the operation consisted of switching the thumb to the other side of the hand to convert a "right hand into a left hand," in order to subsequently implant it on the handless wrist that the man has had on his left arm for four decades.

The surgeon said that it will be difficult for the patient to use the hand in a "completely normal" way, since his original left hand was amputated 40 years ago.

The medical team led by Cavadas carried out a transplant last year of forearms and hands for the Colombian Alba Lucia Carmona.

In that operation, both hands were implanted to substitute those the woman lost in a 1978 explosion during chemical lab experiments in her native Colombia.

[Copyright EFE with Expatica]

Subject: Spanish news

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