Man Receives Two New Arms

. Wednesday, October 8

After six long years of living with no arms, Karl Merk, a German dairy farmer who lost his arms in a tractor accident, talked today about his experience in having two arms transplanted in July.

It took 40 medical team members 15 hours to perform the transplant, and so far, Merk's body has shown no signs of rejection and the scars are healing well. It is the world's first full arm transplant.

Since losing both arms, Merk has needed 24 hour care. He looks forward to being able to dress and feed himself, and drink a glass of milk on his own.


Grandy said...

Amazing what science can do. Imagine the pride this man will have when he can be self-sufficient. Having experienced a time where I was not, I am SO appreciative when I am.

Theresa Komor said...

Ain't that the truth!

*lynne* said...

wow that's amazing! thanks for sharing. My hubby pointed out that this could happen only with the death of one or two other people who could then donate his/their arms. Kinda sobering.

Glad to see the arms aren't being rejected. The next challenge is to have the brain "talk" to the new arms... he'll have to unlearn and re-learn a lot of things in order to use the arms... but still... wow... amazing.

Theresa Komor said...

Yes, both arms came from one 'donor' and I agree, that's the sobering part of the story, as it is with any transplant. I believe the article said the arms were tingling, and that's a good start on building the neural pathways.

Yeah, it's cool. I have my fingers crossed that it works for the man.