In 'world first', man born without hand gets one: surgeons

December 22, 2016

Surgeons in Poland said Thursday they had successfully attached a hand from a deceased donor to a man born without one, in what they claimed was a world first.

"It is the first graft in the world of an upper limb onto an adult with this congenital defect," said Adam Domanasiewicz, who headed the team of surgeons at Wroclaw Medical University Hospital.

"We are talking about a man who lived 32 years without this member."

Up to now, a similar procedure had been performed only on newborn conjoined twins in Indonesia and Canada, Domanasiewicz said.

Hands have also been grafted onto patients whose own limbs were amputated.

The transplant to the wrist was performed on December 15 in an operation that lasted 13 hours.

The patient, identified by his first name Piotr, was all smiles after the procedure and spoke of his dream for the future.

"I'd like to be able to hug my family using both hands. Until now I'd been using my stump," he told private news channel TVN 24.

As of today, he can only move his fingers and not the hand itself, but doctors are optimistic that he will gain more mobility over time.

"This is an important breakthrough in neurophysiology and the practice of transplants because up to now it was thought that—in the case of this type of congenital defect—such grafts could not be done," Domanasiewicz said.

The operation could open up new possibilities to hundreds of thousands of people in the world born without members whose only option to date has been prostheses, he added.

Explore further: California conjoined twins separated in successful surgery

Related Stories

California conjoined twins separated in successful surgery

December 8, 2016
Conjoined California twins Eva and Erika Sandoval have become two separate toddlers following a 17-hour marathon surgery and are recovering "quite well," officials said Thursday.

Frenchwoman who received first face transplant dies

September 6, 2016
The world's first face transplant recipient, Frenchwoman Isabelle Dinoire, died in April "after a long illness", a hospital said Tuesday.

Boy who lost limbs to infection gets double-hand transplant

July 28, 2015
Surgeons in Philadelphia have performed a double-hand transplant on a boy believed to be the youngest patient to undergo the procedure.

Cleveland surgeons perform nation's first uterus transplant

February 26, 2016
Surgeons in Cleveland say they have performed the nation's first uterus transplant, a new frontier that aims to give women who lack wombs a chance at pregnancy.

Recommended for you

Surgical blood transfusions tied to clot risk

June 13, 2018
(HealthDay)—Blood transfusions around the time of surgery may raise your risk for dangerous blood clots, researchers say.

Tonsil and adenoid removal associated with respiratory, allergic and infectious disease

June 7, 2018
Tonsil and adenoid removal associated with long-term risks of respiratory, allergic and infectious diseases Removing tonsils and adenoids in childhood increases the long-term risk of respiratory, allergic and infectious diseases, ...

Clues found to early lung transplant failure

May 21, 2018
Among organ transplant patients, those receiving new lungs face a higher rate of organ failure and death compared with people undergoing heart, kidney and liver transplants. One of the culprits is inflammation that damages ...

In breakthrough, surgeon builds windpipes from arteries

May 20, 2018
Where others failed, sometimes spectacularly, French surgeon Emmanuel Martinod has helped people whose windpipes have been ravaged by cancer and other diseases to live and breathe normally again.

Blood type O patients may have higher risk of death from severe trauma

May 1, 2018
Blood type O is associated with high death rates in severe trauma patients, according to a study published in the open access journal Critical Care that involved 901 Japanese emergency care patients.

Brains, eyes, testes: off-limits for transplants?

April 28, 2018
Since the world's first successful organ transplant in 1954—a kidney—the discipline has advanced to the point where a wounded soldier could have his penis and scrotum replaced in a groundbreaking operation last month.

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.