Spanish hospital transplants right hand to left arm
A hospital in Spain has successfully transplanted a man's right hand onto his left arm, changing the location of the thumb in the process, a spokesman said on Monday.
The unidentified 63-year-old man had lost his left hand in an accident four decades ago and three years ago he suffered a stroke which paralyzed the right side of his body.
The 13-hour operation was carried out at the Virgen del Consuelo hospital in the Mediterranean port city of Valencia on April 29 by Doctor Pedro Cavadas who last year performed Spain's first double hand transplant.
"The patient is happy, he can already move his hand," Virginia Cavadas, the doctor's sister who is also a member of a foundation he runs, told AFP.
"He could not do anything and he needed help for everything," she said.
Transplants of body parts belonging to the same person have a much higher rate of success than those involving the transplant of body parts from a donor. They also do not require the patient to undergo anti-rejection treatments.
Hand transplant operations have been performed successfully since 1998.
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