Paraplegic was amputated from waist down

Paraplegic was amputated from waist down

SINGAPORE - In 2007, two doctors at Tan Tock Seng Hospital performed a radical procedure: They amputated paraplegic Amri Mohd Samat from the waist down.

The procedure, called a hemicorporectomy, took 15 hours, and was done in May that year. It was the first time such an operation has been carried out in Singapore.

Mr Amri, then 41, who was paralysed from the waist down after a motorcycle accident in 1986, suffered from an infection that ate away the flesh on his buttocks and thighs, leaving them so decomposed that his pelvic and thigh bones were exposed.

The infection, caused by pressure sores from sitting in a wheelchair for years, also put him in a coma. He was dying, reported The Straits Times then.

Hemicorporectomy is one of the most mutilating surgical procedures and involves the removal of the legs, genitalia, urinary system, pelvic bones, anus and rectum.

The doctors also created a colostomy, or opening into the colon from outside the body, to redirect body waste. They also created another opening to drain the urine from the abdomen.

Similar operations have been carried out in the US, but many surgeons are reluctant to offer it to patients as it is highly complex.

Mr Amri was found dead in his room on June 2, 2011. The cause of death was pneumonia.

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