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Doctor Performs Amputation by Text Message

pickens (49171) writes | more than 5 years ago

Medicine 0

Peace Corps Online writes "Vascular surgeon David Nott performed a life-saving amputation on a boy in DR Congo following instructions sent my text message from a colleague in London. The boy's left arm had been ripped off and was badly infected and gangrenous, there were just 6in (15cm) of the boy's arm remaining, much of the surrounding muscle had died and there was little skin to fold over the wound. "He had about two or three days to live when I saw him," Nott said. Nott, volunteering in with the medical charity Medecins Sans Frontieres, knew he needed to perform a forequarter amputation requiring removal of the collar bone and shoulder blade and contacted Professor Meirion Thomas at London's Royal Marsden Hospital, who had performed the operation before. "I texted him and he texted back step by step instructions on how to do it," Nott said. The operation is only performed about 10 times a year in the UK and requires the back-up of an intensive-care unit because patients usually lose a lot of blood during the procedure. Nott had just one pint of blood and an elementary operating theatre, but the operation was a success and the teenager made a full recovery. "I don't think that someone that wasn't a vascular surgeon would have been able to deal with the large blood vessels involved," said Nott. "That is why I volunteer myself so often, I love being able to save someone's life.""

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