Surgeons Perform First Elbow Transplant Between Same Patient’s Arms

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UCSF Health doctors have achieved a first-of-its-kind bend transplant between a same patient’s arms. Experts contend a Apr 2016 medicine could renovate diagnosis for mishap patients, harmed veterans and others with bend and corner conditions.

“The fact that a donor bend came from a same studious — a counterpart picture bend — is what creates this procession singular and a initial of a kind,” UCSF Health surgeon Dr. Lisa Lattanza pronounced of a Apr 15 transplant on 37-year-old Reginald Cook.

Doctors inspect Reginald Cook's arm before his bend transplant surgery.

Doctors inspect Reginald Cook’s arm before his bend transplant surgery.

A Novel Surgery

The 12-hour procession during UCSF Medical Center during Parnassus concerned 5 surgeons, dual orthopaedic upper-arm ascendancy specialists and 3 plastic/microvascular surgeons. The doctors worked on both of Cook’s arms concurrently to mislay and bond bone, muscles, blood vessels, nerves and skin.

“This medicine was a bit like ballet,” pronounced Lattanza, who led a group that transplanted Cook’s left bend into his right arm. “Everybody knew their partial and achieved exquisitely during usually a right time.”

A 2009 automobile collision left Cook, of El Paso, Texas, in a coma for months. He postulated mind trauma, several damaged skeleton in his neck and stoppage in his legs, necessitating a wheelchair.

Cook also suffered a finish unconcern of a brachial plexus, a network of nerves, in his left arm and unsuccessful to redeem any haughtiness function. Despite mixed reconstructive procedures to correct a cracked bend in his right arm, Cook found himself with no bend corner and usually half a bone in that prong after an ingrained bend corner became infected.

As a result, he could no longer control a arm for even elementary tasks like eating, nonetheless he did have good transformation of his right hand. Cook relied on his sister and a visiting helper for care.

An Unusual Collaboration

“He did not have use of possibly arm,” pronounced Dr. Eric Sides, Cook’s orthopaedic surgeon in Texas who worked with Lattanza on a case. “His right arm was fundamentally solidified during 90 degrees, and his left arm was totally nonfunctional.”

Sides, an partner highbrow during Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center El Paso, initial met Lattanza in a mid-1990s when a dual were residents during a University of Missouri-Kansas City. He contacted Lattanza after Cook suggested a thought of an bend transplant, anticipating to recover use of one of his arms.

Sides and Cook trafficked to San Francisco to accommodate with Lattanza in Nov 2015. The procession was potentially unsure given Cook could mislay duty in his right hand, due to probable haughtiness repairs during a operation, as good as injure hankie from a prior infection and surgeries.

In a months heading adult to a procedure, Lattanza worked with UCSF colleagues and consultants around a universe to digest a novel surgery, that would mislay Cook’s left arm above a bend and transplant that bend to his right arm. The group also used 3-D mechanism displaying program from Belgian association Materialise to assistance devise a surgery.

The UCSF Health surgical group enclosed Dr. Scott Hansen, Dr. Charles Lee, Dr. Michael Terry and Dr. Samantha Piper. Alyssa Ricker, principal clinical operative for Materialise, served as imaging consultant.

Despite endless planning, Lattanza and her group done adjustments on a fly during a medicine given Cook’s anatomy had altered given his initial visit.

“The skeleton came behind together well, a corner is operative good and a strap is alive,” Lattanza pronounced of Cook’s surgery. “He’s relocating his right hand, so there was no haughtiness repairs during a operation. We’re all really carefree on a outcome.”

She combined that, one month after a transplant, Cook was means to lift his palm to his face and mouth on his own.

Hope for a Future

“I’m now feeling hold and sensations,” pronounced Cook, who was scheduled to stay in San Francisco for several weeks after a surgery, while doctors monitored his progress.

Once Cook earnings to Texas, Sides says he hopes his studious can recover a ability to dress and feed himself over a subsequent year — and potentially even travel again.

“If we can make a arm clever enough, he should be fine to travel with a cane,” Sides said.

Cook will restart earthy therapy in his right arm, and his left arm now has suitable anchoring for a prosthesis if desired, his doctors said.

“I can’t wait to be eccentric and give my 14-year-old daughter a large hug,” pronounced Cook, who hopes to turn a motivational speaker. “This has been life changing for me.”

Source: UCSF