Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Transplant gamble

‘I Can Do Absolutely Nothing.’ The First American With a Double Hand Transplant Wants Them Removed | TIME

Whether a hand transplant will give you a usable hand seems a very big gamble:
The surgeon who led the transplant in 2009, Dr. W.P. Andrew Lee, is currently at Johns Hopkins where he’s preparing to perform penis transplants for American veterans. Lee says the need for removal is uncommon and has occurred in six out of 100 similar transplants in the U.S. and Europe.

“Mr. Kepner’s transplanted hands do not function as well as those of other hand transplant recipients,” said Lee in an email to TIME. “Our team has performed bilateral hand/arm
transplants in four patients to date, including Mr. Kepner. The other three patients have had significant functional return in their hands and have been able to resume completely independent living, including driving, working, and going to school.”

“Complex surgery such as hand transplant do not produce uniform results in everyone,” Lee adds, “but we have been encouraged by the functional return in the great majority
of our recipients whose lives have been transformed by the procedure.”
I suspect medical science is better off pursuing robot hands.  

1 comment:

John said...

The first heart transplant recipient lived only a few weeks post transplant. Now they live for decades. The first attempts are very much guinea pig trials using humans. There is no other way. In time it will work.