Lifestyle & Belief

Soldier receives rare double arm transplant


Prosthetic legs and arms await new amputees at a Red Cross orthopedic center in Kabul, Afghanistan on September 10, 2011.


John Moore

US soldier Brendan Marrocco, who lost all four limbs in a 2009 roadside bombing in Iraq, has successfully received a rare double arm transplant at Johns Hopkins Hospital.

According to Agence France-Presse, he is one of only seven people in the United States who have had the complex transplant surgery.

The first successful double arm transplant was in Germany in 2008.

The Associated Press reported that Marrocco described himself as a "wounded warrior...very wounded" on Facebook. 

He also tweeted that his new arms "already move a little" about a month after his surgery.

The 26-year-old is said to be speaking for the first time publicly about this transplant at a press conference today, noted the AP. He also received bone marrow from the same donor who gave him his new arms in an attempt to help his body accept his new limbs with little medication used to prevent rejection.

More from GlobalPost: Turkish surgeons attempt quadruple limb transplant on amputee

The military sponsors this type of operation to help wounded troops. Around 300 soldiers have lots arms or hands in Iraq and Afghanistan, according to the AP.

Marrocco's double arm transplant involved the connection of bones, blood vessels, muscles, tendons, nerves and skin on both arms.