The man aged between 20 and 30 who received the first transplant of both legs in the world could walk within six or seven months, said Dr. Pedro Cadavas, who performed the surgery that lasted around ten hours in hospital La Fe, in Valencia.
The young man lost his limbs as a result of an automobile accident, he suffered a traumatic amputation of both legs above the knee, on the right one above the femur and on the left one in the third disc of that bone. According to Cavadas, he was “destined to a wheelchair” and his chances of walking were “zero”, since he could not adapt prostheses due to anatomical and technical reasons.
“The patient is awake since yesterday afternoon and he’s happy as God, he cried after he saw the legs,” said the plastic surgeon. “I guess he will be able to walk with crutches, I imagine that in long term, he will be even able to leave the crutches, but it all depends on how his rehabilitation goes,” he said.
The patient should be able to move his knees in three weeks, in two months, he should be able to walk in a pool and in three months to hold his own weight. It will still take months for him to have sensitivity in his feet, but “if everything goes as we think in six or seven months he could be walking,” said the surgeon. “The case is going well, and the patient is delighted, he’ll be out of ICU (intensive care Unit) shortly.” “He has to do a huge post-surgery rehabilitation effort over the years, and in the end the patient will be walking.”
Source: AFP, EFE