Berkeley CSUA MOTD:Entry 53425
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2017/11/18 [General] UID:1000 Activity:popular
11/18   

2009/10/2-21 [Health, Finance] UID:53425 Activity:nil
10/1    http://www.boingboing.net/2009/10/02/man-with-transplante.html
        Man with transplanted hands. It says nerve cells grow about an
        inch a month so he'll have sensation in his fingers soon.
        I thought nerve cells, after broken, cannot be re-connected.
        Is this something new?
        \_ You thought wrong. If that was true then every woman who has
           her nipples moved during breast implants or lifts would lose all
           sensation in her nipples. Nerves grow back, but slowly.
           \_ so the paralegics that broke their necks have no hope, ever?
        \_ Peripheral nerves grow back at that rate.  Central nerve growth
           rates are being studied, but at the moment, the convention is that
           central nerves do not grow back appreciably.
        \_ from my neurosurgeon friend: "central nervous system (brain and
           spinal cord) neurons, in general, do not regenerate after injury.
           peripheral nerves (in arms and legs, and yes nipples) can regenerate.
           This only occurs significantly in the optimal environment: no
           scarring, nerves sew together and re-aligned, injury not close to
           spine, young patients, and repair immediately after injury. Even
           with the above, recovery is often incomplete and poor. A re-attached
           hand will get some sensation, and maybe some innervation of muscles
           in the hand--but nothing close to normal usually. Movement of fingers
           should be decent because the muscles in the forearms move the fingers,
           not the muscles in the hand that control fine movements."
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Cache (3424 bytes)
www.boingboing.net/2009/10/02/man-with-transplante.html
permalink Jeff Kepner, the first person in England to receive two hand transplants, is now home after four months of recovery at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center in the United States. Handtranssss In a strange way, the double transplant was a bit of setback for Kepner, who had lost part of both of his arms and legs in 1999. Doctors amputated the limbs in a bid to save his life after Kepner came down with a strep infection that plunged him into a coma. After the amputations, Kepner was outfitted with prosthetic hands and feet and forged on with his life. "He had gotten quite used to his hooks," his mother says of her son's artificial arms. " Now in therapy (after the transplants), he is learning how to pick up small items, like cotton balls, and catch a ball, but he still has no feeling in his fingers. The nerves grow about an inch a month from where the hands were attached, at the forearm. "They told him it will be at least until the end of the year before those nerves get down into those fingers," Doris Schafer said. October 2, 2009 10:01 AM I wonder how many billions of dollars he had to pay for those new hands. Probably he'll be in debt up to his eyeballs for the rest of his life. And then that goes to show that only the extremely rich can afford to have hands sewn on. October 2, 2009 10:31 AM Reminds me of that classic horror movie The Hands of Orlac, wherein a famous pianist loses his hands after a plane crash and gets new hands that formerly belonged to a serial killer who choked people to death. However, vis the health-care debate, the man does not appear to be at all wealthy (he worked as a manager in a Borders bookstore), and likely had the service performed pro-bono. I have to wonder, were the man in fact from England, whether NHS would have approved giving him a procedure like this when he seemed to be functioning reasonably well with the prosthetics. October 2, 2009 11:15 AM However, vis the health-care debate, the man does not appear to be at all wealthy (he worked as a manager in a Borders bookstore), and likely had the service performed pro-bono. I have to wonder, were the man in fact from England, whether NHS would have approved giving him a procedure like this when he seemed to be functioning reasonably well with the prosthetics. Do you seriously think any insurance company with a legally defensible option to refuse payment for this procedure would pay for it, thus taking money out of their bonuses and shareholders' dividends? This type of procedure would almost certainly be experimental (and risky) anywhere. To restate the genuine situation in Britain: if a treatment is available privately but not on the NHS, those with money or expensive insurance are free to pay for it. Rich British people get the same treatment as rich Americans. An American who is unemployed has to rely on charity or bankruptcy, or be lucky enough to qualify for medicaid. October 2, 2009 12:43 PM @18 Kind of like that guy in the Burger King commercials. What if the person they belonged to before was a serial masturbating nose picker? October 2, 2009 1:41 PM What if the person they belonged to before was a serial masturbating nose picker? Then the hands will thank the heavens for this turn of events. Creative Commons License permitting non-commercial sharing with attribution. Boing Boing is a trademark of Happy Mutants LLC in the United States and other countries.