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Saturday, October 18, 2014

Farm labourer injured by a Rototiller blade


A short case report published in the journal Proceedings of the Royal Society of Medicine (now known as the Journal of the Royal Society of Medicine) in 1956, entitled "An Unusually Large Foreign Body in the Hand", describes the story of a man who had a bad accident while doing farm work, ending up with his hand impaled upon a large, curved blade. Surgeons removed the foreign body. Miraculously, there was almost no lasting damage.


"A farm labourer had his right hand impaled by a Rototiller blade, and was brought to hospital with the foreign body in situ. [The blade, which measured 4 7/8 in. by 5 in. overall and weighed 9 3/4 oz. had entered the ulnar border of the wrist and emerged through the palmar aspect of the thumb. Owing to its curvature, removal was impossible without open operation, where it was found to be lying between the tendons and nerves in front of the wrist and within the abductor policis brevis.]

Post-operatively, there was temporary median palsy and anaesthesia, but this recovered, and he was left with an almost normally functioning hand, the only residual function being incomplete flexion of 5th finger."


Given the dimensions of the blade, this sounds like a very lucky escape!




Source:

Strange F. G. S. C. (1956) An Unusually Large Foreign Body in the Hand. Proc R Soc Med. 49(4): 183.



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