We’ve seen some pretty insane medical miracles in our time, but this one takes the cake in a crazy Quentin Tarantino sort of way.
When Xiao Wei, an industrial worker in Changde, China, suffered a horrific accident in which his hand was severed, doctors were able to save it by attaching it to his ankle.
“The concept of saving a severed part of the body by attaching it to another part of the body to give it a blood supply is well recognized,” says Cairian Healy of the Royal College of Surgeons in England in an interview with BBC News.
This innovative procedure, known as temporary ectopic implantation, makes it possible to recover amputated limbs with reconstructive microsurgery.
After a grueling seven-hour long ordeal to get Wei to the hospital, Chinese doctors thought it would be impossible to reattach his hand at the time, so they decided to keep it alive by affixing it to his ankle.
Apparently, it worked.
After about a month, doctors were able to successfully put Wei’s healed hand back on his arm.