Doctors in central China decided upon a surgical procedure that would leave everyone scratching their heads (and feeling a tad queasy)—they attached a man’s severed hand to his leg.
The patient, a factory worker called Zhou, lost his left hand in a workplace incident “involving a spinning blade machine,” according to the Daily Mail.
The procedure is meant to give the nerves and tendons in the severed hand to time to heal before reattaching it. A severed finger, Dr. Tang explained, needs to be reconnected to blood supply within 10 hours—for severed limbs, however, that window is is a lot shorter.
“If a limb is short of blood for too long, its tissues die and it will be unsalvageable,” said Dr. Tang.
Dr. Tang’s team successfully re-attached Zhou’s hand to his arm in a 10-hour surgery. Incredibly, Zhou can now move all of his fingers, but will need a lot of rehabilitation before he regains full use of his hand.