On her way home one night, Kelsey Ward got into a terrible rollover crash that totally severed her left arm.
By the time paramedics and firefighters extracted her from the wreck, finding the arm was a second thought. Then one paramedic saw fingertips under the carand somehow got it into the same ambulance as Kelsey.
Thankfully, Kelsey survived the crash, but doctors were looking past that: they wanted to reattach Kelsey’s arm.
Something like this has little chance of succeeding. There was almost no literature on any past operations that hadthe same magnitude and consequences. The arm, amputated at the shoulder, had been severed cleanly, so they were in luck.
Using muscles from her back and tissue from her leg, theywere able to reconstitute parts of the arm and reattach it. All there was left to see was if there wouldbe nerve regeneration. In other words, would Kelsey eventuallybe able to use the arm?
Just two months after surgery, she amazed doctors by being able to bend her elbow, reaching a major milestone on her road to recovery. With enough physical therapy, they are sure that she will soon regain use of her limb!
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