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Johns Hopkins Surgeons Lead Double Arm Transplant

Brendan Marrocco Brendan Marrocco

In December 2012, a surgical team led by Johns Hopkins physicians performed The Johns Hopkins Hospital’s first bilateral arm transplant, together with an innovative treatment to prevent rejection of the new limbs. That treatment entailed an infusion of the deceased donor’s bone marrow cells, and has so far succeeded in both preventing rejection and reducing the need for anti-rejection drugs, which can cause complications such as infection and organ damage.

The patient, Brendan M. Marrocco, a 26-year-old infantryman,  lost all four limbs in a 2009 roadside bomb attack in Iraq. Marrocco received a transplant of two arms from a deceased donor, becoming one of only seven people in the United States who have undergone successful double hand transplants. His transplants involved the connection of bones, blood vessels, muscles, tendons, nerves and skin on both arms, and was the most extensive and complicated limb transplant procedure so far performed in the United States. Marrocco also agreed to participate in a study of the new anti-rejection regimen, which lead surgeon W. P. Andrew Lee, M.D., hopes to make the new standard of care for limb and face transplants. The study is sponsored by the Armed Forces Institute of Regenerative Medicine of the U.S. Department of Defense.

Marrocco and his surgeons spoke at press conference at The Johns Hopkins Hospital on January 29, 2013. Here are some highlights of the press coverage. Visit the Comprehensive Transplant Center to learn more about Brendan's story

National Coverage

Washington Post

Johns Hopkins Hospital performs double arm transplant on Army soldier (Video)

USA Today

Former soldier speaks out about double arm transplants

Soldier gets double-arm transplant at Johns Hopkins

Double-arm transplant recipient: Feels amazing (VIDEO)

NBC News

Double-arm transplant soldier 'getting a second chance'

ABC News

Iraq War Vet Brendan Marrocco Gets Double Arm Transplant

CBS News

Double-arm transplant recipient on his 'second chance'

Fox News Radio

Soldier Receives Double-Arm Transplant


Soldier looks forward to driving with new arms

The Atlantic

The Most Inspiring Things About Quadruple Amputee Brendan Marrocco


Limbless Soldier Gets Double Arm Transplant


U.S. soldier gets double arm transplant

Medical News Today

Soldier Who Lost Four Limbs Gets Double-Arm Transplant

Science World Report

Soldier Gets Double-Arm Transplant; New Hope for Wounded Military


Arutz Sheva (Israel National News)

Edmonton Journal

Soldier who lost all 4 limbs in Iraq wants to dive, swim with new arms he got in transplant

Soldier who lost all 4 limbs to discuss new arms following double transplant at Johns Hopkins

CBC News (Canada)

Double arm recipient aims to drive