Psychosocial Outcomes after Bilateral Hand Transplantation

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Background:Since the first successful hand transplantation in 1998, there have been multiple reports about surgical technique, transplant survival, and immunosuppression. However, very limited published data exist on psychosocial outcomes following hand transplantation.Methods:We report psychosocial outcomes in a patient with bilateral hand transplants at the midforearm level with serial follow-ups over 3.5 years. Different metrics used to study psychosocial outcomes included the following: SF-12, CES-D, Dyadic Adjustment Scale, Rosenberg SE, and EQ-5D.Result:Preoperatively, our patient did not have any evidence of depression (CES-D = 3), had a nonstressful relationship with his spouse (Dyadic Adjustment Scale = 100), and self-esteem was in the normal range (Rosenberg SE = 21). These metrics and his additional scales (SF-12 MCS, EQ-5D, and EQ-VAS) did not change appreciably and were within the normal range for the entire duration of 3.5-year follow-up at all different time points.Conclusion:With the increasing popularity of hand transplantation and the increasing awareness of the importance of psychosocial parameters in overall success, appropriate, comprehensive, and standardized measurements are important. These should be an integral part of patients’ screening and follow-up.

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