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Mon Jan 28, 2013, 09:56 PM

U.S. soldier receives rare double arm transplant

A US soldier who lost all four limbs in a 2009 roadside bomb attack in Iraq has successfully received a rare double arm transplant, Johns Hopkins hospital said Monday.

The infantryman, whose name and age were not released, is one of just seven people in the United States who have successfully received the complex transplant.

The first successful double arm transplant was in 2008 in Germany.

This latest transplant was paired with an innovative treatment to prevent rejection of the new limbs which involved an infusion of the deceased donor’s bone marrow cells.

It “has so far succeeded in both preventing rejection and reducing the need for anti-rejection drugs, which can cause complications such as infection and organ damage,” Johns Hopkins said in a statement.

The transplant involved the connection of bones, blood vessels, muscles, tendons, nerves and skin on both arms.

More details will be presented Tuesday at a press conference with the surgeons and soldier, who also agreed to participate in a study of the new anti-rejection regimen sponsored by the Armed Forces Institute of Regenerative Medicine.

http://www.rawstory.com/rs/2013/01/28/u-s-soldier-receives-rare-double-arm-transplant/

10 replies, 963 views

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Response to Playinghardball (Original post)

Mon Jan 28, 2013, 10:03 PM

1. for a brief moment, the headline made me think of an old army joke...

so i thought "... the bad news is, we transplanted your left arm to your right arm and ...."

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Response to unblock (Reply #1)

Mon Jan 28, 2013, 10:48 PM

8. Or the old Harry Harrison series, Bill the Galactic Hero

He lost his left arm in battle so he had to get a new one. The doctor did make a mistake and gave him another right arm!

Seriously, though, this is great that they can do this kind of thing at all

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Response to Playinghardball (Original post)

Mon Jan 28, 2013, 10:05 PM

2. Incredible... Such a brave man, and such a talented team of doctors...

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Response to Playinghardball (Original post)

Mon Jan 28, 2013, 10:15 PM

3. Good luck and God's speed!!

Our troops deserve the best. No mater when they served.

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Response to Lady Freedom Returns (Reply #3)

Mon Jan 28, 2013, 10:22 PM

5. Yeah, the best. And that's not it.

I wonder what percentage of American's total overall freedoms were purchased with his lost arms.

The best would be to not imperil them without a clear and necessary purpose.

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Response to Bonobo (Reply #5)

Mon Jan 28, 2013, 10:52 PM

9. Imperil them without a clear and necessary purpose is something that should never happen.

Yet, they have the courage to do what many do not have the courage or health to do.
And to those that were drafted, they faced what this country called them to do.
These men and women have/are giving their all. To that I say make sure that when they come back, be it of an errand of great importance to a fools errand as we have seen of late, they need everything we can offer.

I have seen vets on these streets that have lost limbs, some lost them in past wars. I have seen where they have lost a part of their souls. They have so many needs from physical to mental, yet no help. I have seen many with dreams that they put on hold due to either the draft (yes, those vets still need help) or due to the recruiter telling them how it will help them with their dreams. Men and women alike.

When I see anything that is trying to do something, as this story, it gives me hope that their is something still trying to work for them. The VA can't do as much as they want due to Congress holding the purse strings. And helping the American Solder seems to drop off their list of need faster that the need of the poor in general.

We can yell and scream about the 20/20 sight of the past all day. We can point at the Conservatives and they will point at us due to President Obama not/can't just dump everything. These people need us to help now. We need to cheer at what victories they can get off the battlefield. We need to help however we can. Even if it is just sitting down and talking with them, donating to the VA for their homeless vet projects, just don't forget them.

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Response to Playinghardball (Original post)

Mon Jan 28, 2013, 10:20 PM

4. So, doctor, will I be able to play the piano with my new arms?

That's amazing - I never could play the piano before!

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Response to Playinghardball (Original post)

Mon Jan 28, 2013, 10:24 PM

6. I didn't even know you could do a single arm transplant - pretty amazing!

Hope things go well for this guy going forward...

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Response to Playinghardball (Original post)

Mon Jan 28, 2013, 10:44 PM

7. The recipient is now a chimera, and so probably won't

reject the tissue, because his body tells him it's his.

Very clever approach. Hope it works.

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Response to Playinghardball (Original post)

Tue Jan 29, 2013, 02:14 PM

10. Soldier who lost all limbs in Iraq gets double arm transplant

Press conference today.

http://www.baltimoresun.com/health/blog/bs-hs-arm-transplant-announcement-20130128,0,6358314.story|

Brendan Marrocco, 26, was the first soldier to survive losing all four limbs in the Iraq War, and doctors revealed Monday that he received a double-arm transplant on December 18 at Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore. (Jan. 29)

By Andrea K. Walker, The Baltimore Sun

1:55 p.m. EST, January 29, 2013
A soldier who lost all of his limbs in the Iraq War received double arm transplants at Johns Hopkins Hospital last month in a rare procedure that has already begun to restore some normalcy to his life.

Hopkins doctors are to speak in detail about the rare procedure performed on 26-year-old Brendan Marrocco in a press briefing today. The Army infantryman lost his arms and legs in a roadside bomb attack in 2009 becoming the first soldier of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars to lose all four limbs in combat and survive.

Lead surgeon Dr. W.P. Andrew Lee said in a phone interview that it could take a couple of years for the arms to become fully functional, but that Marrocco is already able to use a computer and has been tweeting. He is expected to be discharged from the hospital today.

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