Wednesday, October 08, 2008

A Double Arm Transplant? Yikes, it's true!

Sometimes truth is stranger than fiction:

World's First Double-Arm Transplant Recipient Calls 'Being Whole Again' Indescribable
MUNICH, Germany — A German farmer who received the world's first complete double arm transplant is recovering well and able to perform some basic tasks, though doctors said Wednesday it still could take up to two years before he relearns how to use his hands.

Doctors spent 15 hours on July 25-26 grafting the donor arms onto the body of 54-year-old Karl Merk, who lost his own just below the shoulder in a farm accident involving a combine six years ago.

"These are my arms, and I'm not giving them away again," Merk said at a news conference at the Munich University Clinic where the operation was done. [...]

He is already able to use them for simple tasks, like opening doors and operating light switches. Read the whole thing for more details.

I'm not against it, but it is weird. There is just something kinda... "Frankensteiny" about the whole thing. WHOSE arms are they, or should I say, WERE they? What would it be like to have hands that weren't the ones you were born with, but were actually someone elses? Someone elses fingerprints... wow. Our modern world.

Imagine if you knew the donor, and then you shake hands with this guy? Imagine... well maybe not, I think I've had enough of this for a while. Yikes indeed!


Walker said...

And just remember, the donor was alive when he 'donated' them! That's the fun part of organ AND limb donation! The AMA has helpfully decided recently that the term 'brain dead' wasn't really working since, by every conceivable measure, donors are, well, alive. So, they are searching for a new word like, maybe, yourtoouselesstolive death.

Chas said...

Eew. It sounds like "Frankenstein" meets "Brave New World".