Teen's Arm Reattached After Pasta Machine Accident - DC News FOX 5 DC WTTG

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Teen's Arm Reattached After Pasta Machine Accident

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BOSTON, MA- Doctors at Massachusetts General Hospital performed a miracle for a teen who lost his arm during a traumatic accident.

17-year-old Brett Bouchard of Massena, New York, severed the right limb at the elbow, while cleaning a pasta machine when he was working at a restaurant.

Surgeons were able to reattach his arm during a complex 10-hour operation, and now the teen says he's feeling great and is focused on his recovery.

“I’ve had my ups and downs, but I've been very optimistic about it. That's all you can do you've got to get through it," said Bouchard.

Doctors say after the accident the arm had to be stored a certain way.

"When an injury like this happens, and we see finger amputations much more commonly than amputations at this level of the arm, they're stored in a very specific way when they are transported to a hospital like Mass General from another institution. They often are put on ice and by keeping the amputated part cold, it allows a little bit more time to do the operation to put it back on," said Dr. Kyle Eberlin. "It's hard to say what his ultimate functional outcome will be, but he should be able to feel his fingers. right now he can move his elbow which is very important and the next step would be to get some finger excursion and function of his fingers."

Bouchard's age plays a role in recovery process.

"It's also because, as Kyle said because of his age, he has a good chance to re-grow back his nerves very well and have sensibility at the end of his replanted arm, which would be far advantaged to a prosthetic. additionally he can undergo further surgeries to replace the muscles that were damaged. Those were the biggest things that we thought warranted a positive risk benefit ratio to percent," said Dr. Curtis Cetrulo.

A future tendon transplant is also being discussed.

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