Abu Dhabi Medics Replace Man's Thumb with Toe After Freak Accident

A Fortunate Turn of Events: From Lost Fingers to a Reconstructed Hand , Amjad Khan, an Abu Dhabi resident and devoted father of five, faced a harrowing accident that resulted in the loss of all the fingers on his right hand.

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Innovative Surgical Success: Abu Dhabi Resident Receives Toe-to-Thumb Transplant After Accident"

Trapped between sections of a lorry's trailer two months ago, his hand suffered severe damage, leaving him without fingers and a thumb. Rushed to Sheikh Shakhbout Medical City (SSMC) in Abu Dhabi, Mr Khan underwent an emergency operation where microvascular replantation was performed on his index, middle, ring, and little fingers during a grueling 12-hour procedure. However, his thumb was deemed too damaged for replantation. The medical team, led by Dr. Roderick Dunn, the chairman of the Division of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery at SSMC, then explored an extraordinary solution – a microvascular toe transfer. Using the second toe from his left foot, they successfully reconstructed a new thumb for his injured hand. Today, Mr Khan has regained the functionality of his hand, thanks to the exceptional multidisciplinary teamwork and cutting-edge surgical techniques at SSMC.

The Complexity of Microvascular Surgery and a Ray of Hope

Microvascular surgery, a highly intricate technique, involves reconnecting tiny blood vessels and nerves in the fingers to restore blood circulation and sensation. In Mr Khan's case, the severity of the injury made the surgical replantation more challenging, as his digits were avulsed from the hand, not cleanly amputated. However, after the marathon operation that spanned an entire night, the index, middle, and ring fingers were successfully reattached. Despite this, the patient's hand was still missing a functional thumb. Determined to provide him with the best possible outcome, Dr. Dunn and his team devised the innovative idea of a toe-to-thumb transplant. Three weeks after the initial injury, the microvascular toe transfer was executed with remarkable success, granting Mr Khan a functional hand with three fingers and a new thumb. This pioneering procedure allowed him to regain movement and return to work, sparing him a life as a hand amputee with significant challenges in supporting his family.

A Testament to Multidisciplinary Teamwork

The success of Mr Khan's remarkable recovery stands as a testament to the exceptional multidisciplinary teamwork at SSMC. From the moment he arrived at the medical center, every effort was made to act swiftly and decisively in the face of a serious trauma. Dr. Ateq Al Messabi, the deputy chief medical officer, and consultant general surgeon at SSMC, expressed pride in their ability to handle such complex cases promptly and effectively, ensuring the best possible outcomes for patients. Today, thanks to the dedication, expertise, and innovative approach of the medical team at SSMC, Mr Khan can move his fingers once more, a testament to the power of modern medicine and the resilience of the human spirit.

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