News Releases

News Releases

United States' First Successful Hand Transplant Recipient Gives His New Hand a Thumb's Up

For Immediate Release: 10/31/2000

The United States' first successful hand transplant recipient Matt Scott continues to gain more function in his new hand. Scott is headed for Louisville November 8 and plans to receive a thumb's up and clean bill of health for his twenty-one month check up from the partnership of physicians from Jewish Hospital, Kleinert, Kutz and Associates Hand Care Center, and the University of Louisville. Warren C. Breidenbach, M.D., hand transplant surgeon, who led the 18-member surgical team at Jewish Hospital says, "He is doing well, continues to take his anti-rejection drugs, and continues to gain progress in the use of his hand while incorporating it into everyday living activities. Scott is able to rotate his wrist and move his fingers to perform such tasks as tying shoes, driving a car, drinking from a glass, and throwing a baseball." "Patient selection is a key to performing an experimental procedure of this magnitude, "says Breidenbach. The patient should be one who understands the risk involved in taking the immunosuppressive drugs to prevent rejection, continue follow-up visits with physicians to monitor and treat rejection episodes, and must adhere to a stringent therapy schedule to improve function. The procedure would not have been a success without the effort put forth by Scott." He continues his therapy sessions twice a week in his home state of New Jersey. A press briefing is scheduled Friday, November 10th, 10 a.m. (EST), at the Jewish Hospital Rudd Heart and Lung Center in the 16th floor Conference Center, 201 Abraham Flexner Way, to give an update on hand transplant recipient, Matt Scott's progress. Scott along with his physicians and hand therapist will address the media and be available to answer questions. Evaluations by physicians during Scott's visit, November 9-10, include a biopsy and other laboratory tests. The press briefing on Friday, November 10 will be up-linked live via satellite coordinates Ku-Band SBS 6 Transponder 5. The signal will be available at 9:45 a.m. (EST) with the press briefing beginning at 10:00 a.m. The press briefing can also be viewed via our web site B-roll of Scott's visit will also be available via satellite and the web site. To eliminate confusion between the United States and world's first hand transplant recipients following is the correct information: The world's first recipient, New Zealander Clint Hallam, who received his new hand in France, in September 1998, has reportedly asked the French surgical team to remove his transplanted limb. Matt Scott is the United States first hand transplant recipient. Scott received his new left hand January 24-25, 1999, when surgeons from the University of Louisville and Kleinert, Kutz and Associates Hand Care Center, PLLC, performed the 15-hour procedure at Jewish Hospital. Scott is extremely happy with the results of the experimental procedure. Worldwide the hand transplant procedure is expected to greatly impact the future of transplantation and reconstructive surgery. The Louisville hand transplant program was developed through a partnership with physicians and researchers at Jewish Hospital, the University of Louisville and Kleinert, Kutz and Associates Hand Care Center, PLLC. New photos will be available online at immediately following the press conference.

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Jewish Hospital & St. Mary's HealthCare Kleinert Institute Kleinert Kutz Hand Care Center University of Louisville School of Medicine