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Did hand transplant succeed? Time will tell

SHARE Did hand transplant succeed? Time will tell

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) -- Biology, not doctors, ultimately will determine whether Matthew Scott's hand transplant is effective, one of his surgeons says.

For now, Scott is "pretty much on cruise control," Dr. Warren C. Breidenbach said Thursday.Scott, a paramedic from Absecon, N.J., received the left hand of a cadaver in a 14 1/2-hour operation that ended Monday at Jewish Hospital.

At Breidenbach's prompting, he flexed his new fingertips ever so slightly Thursday to test tendons that control finger movement.

Scott, 37, lost his left hand in an accident with an M-80 firecracker 13 years ago. He is one of two people in the world with a transplanted hand; the other is an Australian who underwent the graft in Lyon, France, in September.

In a brief visit with reporters and a photographer in his hospital room, Scott sat with his left hand and arm elevated and heavily bandaged, leaving the nails and tips of his fingers visible. He and his wife, Dawn, declined to take questions.