The John Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore has recently made it public news that it has successfully performed a double arm transplant surgery on a US soldier and war hero who was left without any limbs back in 2009, while fighting in Iraq.
More precisely, Brendan Marrocco became a quadruple amputee on Easter Sunday 2009, when he was hit by a roadside bomb.
The doctors in charge of performing this surgery explained that, as far as they knew, Brendan Marrocco was the first soldier to survive despite his losing all his four limbs on the battlefield.
The double arm transplant surgery was performed on December 18, and lasted for a total of 18 hours.
Hoping to give Brendan's body a little push in terms of not rejecting the foreign arms now attached to it, the surgeons agreed that it would be best to also perform a bone marrow transplant.
Thus, bone marrow was also collected from the arms donor and transplanted into Brendan's body.
It is their belief that, courtesy of this bone marrow transplant, the soldier will not require too much medication in order to compel his body to accept the new limbs.
NY Daily News
reports that, all things considered, Brendan's post-surgery recovery will last for about two years.
Still, this soldier must expect that he will have to face several other obstacles, and that things will not always go as smoothly as he, his family and his doctors might want them to.
About a month after undergoing this life-changing surgery, Brendan tweeted as follows: “Ohh yeah today has been one month since my surgery and they already move a little.”
“It’s been frustrating because I have no function out of my hands yet (so) its been tough but I’ve been thru worse,” he later added.
Brendan's double arm transplant was the seventh surgery of this kind ever performed in the United States.