Doctors at a railway hospital in Mumbai Central have reattached the severed forearm of a 37-year-old railway worker. Kiran Chaudhary’s right forearm was severed in an accident at the Western Railway workshop at Mahalaxmi.
Surgeons said that in such incidents, the severed part should be reattached within four hours – a period called the golden hour when the possibility of a successful reattachment is the highest.
In Chaudhury’s case, his colleagues at the workshop immediately informed Western Railway’s Jagjivanram Hospital about the accident and he was wheeled into the operation theatre in 25 to 30 minutes.
“Fortunately, they had placed the severed hand in an ice box which allowed the surgeons to reattach it,” said a senior railway official.
The hand was covered with grease. After cleaning it, doctors re-attached the severed arteries - vessels supplying oxygenated blood in the body – and could manage to restore blood circulation in the formerly severed section.
“He is moving his fingers now. Owing to the extensive injury, we are still observing him in the intensive care unit (ICU). We can’t say that the surgery is 100% successful until he is out of the ICU,” said another official from the hospital.
“His hand was stuck in the rotating space in stator motor armatures (equipment used in the workshop). This is the first time that such an incident was reported from the workshop. That work has been completely stopped unit the inquiry is completed. We have also submitted a report to the labour commissioner,” said Ravinder Bhakar, chief PRO of Western Railway adding that preliminary reports suggest that there was no breach of safety or procedural lapse. “The hand has been reattached,” added Bhakar.
According to senior plastic surgeon, Dr AS Baliarsingh, such surgeries are complex.
“The complete motor function cannot be restored by the surgery but reattachment is the best treatment. The severed limb can be brought in a clean polythene bag and this bag should be kept in ice and water for preserving,” said Dr Baliarsingh.