Doctors re-attach man's thumb ripped off by power drill

December 7, 2022

New Delhi, Dec 6 (IANS) A 27-year-old man whose left thumb got torn off in a drilling accident at work with all connected tendons, arteries, veins, and nerves pulled out, has successfully been operated upon by re-attaching it to the hand.

The incident took place when the patient, an industrial drill operator at a construction equipment manufacturing company, was having a normal day at work and got entangled in a powerful running drill. However, the patient got his thumb attached back by a team of specialists at Amrita Hospital, Faridabad.

Dr. Mohit Sharma, Head, Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery, who led the surgery, said: “The patient came to us with his left thumb traumatically amputated. The complexity of the amputation made the surgery very challenging. This was a case of avulsion amputation of the thumb, with all connecting tendons, arteries, veins, and nerves pulled out. It was not a clear-cut severance, so the thumb was very difficult to replant.”

However, the patient was wheeled immediately into operating theatre and the thumb was re-attached in its natural place in a surgery that lasted 10 hours.

“Thumb reconstruction is one of the most challenging and complicated reconstructive surgeries. The removal of the patient’s thumb occurred due to a powerful pulling force that disrupted all bodily structures up to 20 cm further up the forearm. There was extensive damage to the arteries, veins, and nerves. Numerous grafts had to be applied between the veins to create a healthy structure, restore blood circulation, and allow for end-to-end joining,” Sharma said.

The doctor added that the thumb bone is currently fixed with the help of Kirschner wires (K-wires) used to repair fractures. Once his bone heals in 6-8 weeks, the wires would be pulled out and thumb movements start over time.

The surgery was performed by Dr. Mohit Sharma along with two other surgeons, Dr. Vasundhara Jain and Dr. Devajyoti Guin at the hospital.



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