Organ donation helps man get back forearm

Kochi: In the first instance of its kind in Kerala, and probably in the country itself, An accident victim got his forearm replaced by that of a brain- dead donor.

When Benoy (24) was declared brain dead following a bike accident , his family conveyed Their willingness to have his organs donated though they weren’t quite prepared for the kind of request they were about to get .

Thodupuzha – resident Manu (30) was the beneficiary of a ‘hand transplant’ operation which took over 16 hours by a team of doctors led by Dr.Subramaniya Iyer , clinical professor and head of department of plastic and reconstructive surgery at the Amrita Institute of Medical Sciences .

Though the number of people willing to donate major organs like heart, liver and kidneys in Kerala has been on the rise there exists an unacknowledged taboo about donating limbs. This ‘transplant’ brings hope for hundreds of people with amputated limbs.

“Though we have been ready and waiting for the last few months for a donor, most families Have been reluctant to do so. They are ready to donate any organ except the limbs,” Dr.Iyer said.

Prosthetic forearms were fixed to Binoy’s body before it was handed over to his relative. Binoy, A resident of Varapuzha, was on a ventilator for the past two days after being admitted with serious Injuries following the bike accident.

According to doctors, it took about three hours for them to connect the different nerves, blood vessels and other tissues as part of the operation. “There are about 14 tendons and 8-10 blood Vessels in the region,” Dr. Iyer said.

There are four people already waiting for a hand or arm transplant in the hospital itself.