Digits that were formerly assessed as nonreplantable may now be replanted with the help of the leech Hirudo medicinalis. The early experience with a series of patients who had relative contraindications for replantation is reported. In each case, venous repair was either marginal or technically impossible. Postoperative venous congestion developed following replantation and was treated with the application of medicinal leeches. Patient acceptance was high, and no infections developed. No patient required transfusion. The authors conclude that the use of medicinal leeches shows promise as a safe and effective method of providing temporary venous drainage in replanted digits.
View details for Web of Science ID A1989AJ74100020
View details for PubMedID 2752613