A permanent on-call service for hand amputation (Replantation Service) was established in 2010 as the initiative of the Council of Polish Society for Surgery of the Hand. It is run by three qualified hand centres in Trzebnica, Poznań and Szczecin.
<bold>The aim of the study </bold>was to present a summary of the almost three-year activity of this service.
<bold>Material and methods. </bold>Over this period, a total of 435 cases of total amputations, subtotal amputations and other severe injuries to the hand were referred. Of these, 290 referrals (67%) were accepted and 141 (33%) rejected. Among accepted, there were 100 total (34%) and 113 subtotal (39%) amputations; 81 patients had other, severe hand injuries, such as crush, degloving and extensive wounds involving all tissues.
<bold>Results. </bold>Young and middle-age males constituted the majority of patients with the mean age of 42 years (range 2-82). The most common injury was amputation of several digits (including thumbs) in one patient - 141 cases (48%), followed by amputations from the metacarpal- to the proximal forearm level -115 (39%) and elbow/arm level - 9 cases (3%). Niniteen patients (6%) had multi-level amputation or injury of the involved extremity. Replantation of the completely amputated extremity was performed in 83 patients (28%), revascularization in 95 (32%) and in 59 (20%) primary repair of the complex injuries. In 23 cases, the repair of tissue defects was performed with flaps, mostly with greater omentum. Survival rate was of 84% for replantations and 88% for revascularizations.
<bold>Conclusion. </bold>Establishing of the Replantation Service constituted a significant progress in organization of the management of the most severest upper limb injuries.
Financed by the National Centre for Research and Development under grant No. SP/I/1/77065/10 by the strategic scientific research and experimental development program:
SYNAT - “Interdisciplinary System for Interactive Scientific and Scientific-Technical Information”.