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UK surgical team reports encouraging early results of first hand transplantation

BMJ 2013; 346 doi: (Published 04 January 2013) Cite this as: BMJ 2013;346:f79
  1. Susan Mayor
  1. 1London

A surgical team has reported encouraging results of the United Kingdom’s first hand transplant operation, which used a new technique to amputate the recipient’s non-functioning hand during the procedure, enabling the surgeons to accurately rebuild nerve structures to the transplanted hand.

The team at Leeds General Infirmary carried out the complex eight hour operation on 27 December 2012, after a donor limb became available. Its tissue matched one of the two patients listed to receive a hand transplant, 51 year old Mark Cahill, who was unable to use his right hand because of severe gout.

“This operation is the culmination of a great deal of planning and preparation over the last two years by …

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