Chinese doctors successfully save a man’s severed hand by attaching it to his leg for a month to keep it ‘alive’

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Hunan province, Central China—this man had his hand severed after having an industrial accident where he was working. While cutting something at work with a spinning blade machine, he accidently chopped his left arm off. He was rushed to the Xiangya Hospital in Changsha where doctors assessed his situation.

Doctors operate on the man’s leg as they attach the hand to keep it alive for a month

They could not immediately reattach the man’s hand to his arm because the severed nerves and tendons needed to complete heal before they could sew it back again. Dr Tang Juyu, head of microsurgery at the hospital, thought of a possibility that could “revive” Zhou’s severed hand—a procedure similar to how they saved another man’s hand back in 2013.

The doctors successfully attach the man’s hand to his leg
Dr Juyu explained: “Under normal temperatures, a severed finger needs to resume blood supply within 10 hours, but that time is even shorter for a separated limb. If a limb is short of blood for too long, its tissues die and it will be unsalvageable.”
While many were shocked by the treatment, the doctors assured the public that this wasn’t the first time they used this procedure. On November 10, 2013, a man severed his right hand, and doctors from Changde, also in Hunan province, successfully reattached his hand after being attached to his leg for a month.