Athugið þessi frétt er meira en 2 mánaða gömul.

17 months since world-first transplant

14.06.2022 - 15:41
Mynd með færslu
 Mynd: RÚV - Stefán Jón Ingvarsson - RÚV
Icelander Guðmundur Felix Grétarsson became the first person in the world to receive two full transplanted arms and shoulders in an operation in Lyon, France, 17 months ago this week. His progress since then has been remarkable.

Of the many possible outcomes ahead of surgery, the best would be the achievement of full, normal use of the entire arms and fingers within two-or-so years. The worst would have been an untimely death. Doctors had doubts but decided to press ahead. Their best guess was somewhere in between: partial use of the arms.

Guðmundur Felix has a remarkable range of movement today and can already fully move the arms and make a fist--though he still has trouble moving individual fingers. He has been a keynote speaker at the Scandinavian Plastic Surgery Summit 2022, being held in Reykjavik this week, alongside Aram Gazarian, his French-Armenian chief surgeon, who came to Iceland from a major conference in Mexico, where he spoke at length about the operation on Guðmundur Felix.

“So, I was the topic of conversation there, but not present,” Guðmundur Felix told RÚV, adding that the attention does not make him uncomfortable: “I’ve actually got used to it.”

RÚV's reporter noted how much Guðmundur Felix uses his hands as he speaks, which is something he could not do until recently. “I’ve always done it, actually," he notes. "It just always looked like I was doing this [shrugging repeatedly] with my shoulders, but I was really talking with my hands. I’m a bit Italian like that.”

Aram Gazarian, is Guðmundur Felix's head surgeon:
“Felix got, we can say, unexpected results. And he is still making progress. I do not see any obstacles for him to go far.”

Gudmundur Felix, he has always been very, very optimistic…

“Yes. Not only optimistic, but determined. He is a Viking,” Aram adds.

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