Amputee given double hand transplant after five years on waiting list

A quadruple amputee who has been waiting five years for a double hand transplant has successfully undergone the surgery.

Corinne Hutton, 47, from Renfrewshire in Scotland, lost her hands and feet in 2013 after suffering acute pneumonia and sepsis, which nearly killed her.

Surgeons at Leeds General Infirmary carried out the complicated 12-hour procedure on Ms Hutton earlier this week after more than a dozen false alarms over the years.

Experts have worked hard to find suitable hands for the former businesswoman and were able to inform Ms Hutton this week that a match had been found for her own blood group, skin tone and hand size.

Ms Hutton after her hand transplant Credit: Finding Your Feet/PA

The team working on the procedure included Professor Simon Kay, who was given an OBE in the New Year Honours list, and Professor Andrew Hart from Scotland, who performed the surgery to remove her hands and lower legs in 2013 and has since become her close friend.

Prof Kay, who led the team, performed the first double hand transplant in the UK in 2016, and Ms Hutton was his sixth procedure.

He said: “Corinne is one of the most positive, resilient and determined people I have met and despite all the hurdles she has faced she has now got the hands she wishes for.

“She didn’t go into this lightly, she researched it deeply and understood the risks as well as the benefits.

“She realises what a remarkable life-affirming gift she has received from an unknown family devastated by grief and I know she will be forever grateful."

The surgeon has also urged people to consider organ donation and to discuss their wishes with their family.

Before she fell ill and was given a 5% chance of survival, the mother-of-one, ran her own graphics company in Glasgow.

She now devotes her life to Finding Your Feet the charity she founded to support amputees throughout the UK.

Ms Hutton has since become the first female quadruple amputee to reach the summit of Mount Kilimanjaro, climbed Ben Nevis, abseiled, cycled around the Isle of Arran, taken up skiing and done ballroom dancing lessons.

Abseiling is one of the many activities Ms Hutton has completed Credit: Finding Your Feet/PA

The charity has so far raised more than £700,000 through fundraising and donations.

In 2016 she also posed nude, with her body painted with organs and tissue that are deemed transplantable in a bid to help raise awareness of transplant issues.

A spokesman for Finding Your Feet thanked those who have supported Ms Hutton throughout her journey.

He said: “Cor was close to losing hope about finding a match for a transplant, but that’s not her style.

“She has accomplished an unbelievable amount since losing her limbs, and we’re certain she’ll continue to inspire people as she builds up strength and learns to use her new hands.

“It’s bittersweet, because transplants require a donor. That person and her family have changed the lives of many today, and made it possible for a mum to hold her son’s hand again. Cor will not waste a moment with what they’ve given her.”