The man, who has been identified as Mr. Zhou, lost his entire left hand several weeks ago in a spinning blade machine in the factory where he was working. A surgical team, led by Dr. Tang Juyu, carried out the procedure at the Xiangya Hospital in Changsha in central China.
Tang and the team decided they could not simply put the hand right back where it came from. “There were great risks to reattach the hand back directly to the arm, as tissues of the severed [area] were greatly damaged,” Tang told CNN.
Instead they grafted the hand to Zhou’s lower right calf, and connected it to blood vessels in the region to keep the tissue alive. The operation was a “race against time” to get the blood supply back to the severed hand, Tang said.
After about a month, the blood vessels and tendons in Zhou’s arm healed and the doctors reattached the appendage to its original limb. Zhou has been reported to be able to move his fingers a little bit, and he will continue rehab to try to recover full use of the hand again.
Credits: Carina Storrs, Special to CNN