World's first quadruple limb transplant fails

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The Independent Online

A hospital in Turkey which claimed to have performed the world's first quadruple limb transplant has announced that the operation failed.

A team of 52 doctors at Hacettepe University Hospital in Ankara performed the pioneering surgery on Sevket Cavdar, 27, on Friday night. Two arms and two legs were attached to Mr Cavdar's body, but had to be removed days later after "metabolic complications" meant the limb tissue was incompatible with his own.

"The science council [of the hospital] decided to remove the [limbs] one by one," the hospital said yesterday. "Our patient is now in the intensive care unit. The critical process is still continuing," it said.

Doctors took the decision to remove one of the transplanted legs on Sunday after Mr Cavdar's "cardiovascular system was unable to sustain the limb", the hospital said. He was said to be in a "stable" condition after the procedure, hours before it was decided that all of the limbs would have to be removed. Mr Cavdar lost his own limbs after he was electrocuted in an accident in 1998.

A triple limb transplant performed two months ago at a hospital in the city of Antalya also failed.