Hand transplant 'changed life'

The first person in the UK to have a hand transplant has spoken about his progress nearly two months after the operation, and why the future is suddenly bright.

Real thing 'better than having a prosthetic limb'

I can see why people with two hands don't understand.

But going from a hand that can't do anything, it doesn't seem unusual. Having a hand that is warm, that feels, that is part of you, is much better than a prosthetic limb.

The future's changed. Now I've got something to look forward to.

– Mark Cahill

Watch Medical Editor, Lawrence McGinty's report about the transplant in full.

Transplant patient enjoying smaller, more freckled hand

The first person in the UK to have a hand transplant has spoken about his progress nearly two months after the operation. 51-year-old Mark Cahill lost the use of his right hand due to severe gout. A new technique meant it could removed in the same operation where a donor hand was also transplanted.

Mark Cahill with his new hand following the operation
Mark Cahill with his new hand following the operation Credit: ITV News

In an interview with the Radio Times Mr Cahill said he has had no problems accepting the new hand, despite it being smaller, paler and more freckled than the other.

He added: "I've always seen it as my hand, since the moment I woke up after the operation."

He said he also feels that the fingernails have become his own.

"They grow at the same rate on both hands and they've already been cut three times. So whatever it is that makes your nails grow must come from me."

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