SHREWSBURY, NJ – January 22, 2004 – The second nerve transplant ever to be performed on the East Coast, took place yesterday, January 21, at 2:00 p.m. The surgery was performed at Monmouth Medical Center by a team of medical professionals led by Dr. Andrew Elkwood, M.D. of the Plastic Surgery Center in Shrewsbury, NJ.
The nerve transplant is a complex procedure, utilizing new technology that enables doctors to make use of nerves donated by a deceased individual in order to reverse many life-altering paralyses. Yesterday’s procedure was intended to restore functionality of 26 year-old, Brian Blair’s arm, paralyzed in a motocross accident last April. The nerve donor was a 56 year-old male school teacher from the Philadelphia area, who died unexpectedly of a stroke.
“It is remarkable the extent to which recent advancements in medical technology have worked to improve patients’ quality of life,” said Dr. Andrew Elkwood. “And as the field of reconstructive surgery continues to evolve through medical advancements, we are confident that patients will continue to benefit from exciting new procedures.”
Dr. Andrew Elkwood, a New Jersey-based plastic and reconstructive surgeon, performed the first nerve transplant on the East Coast in March 2003, on a patient who was shot in the arm and leg. The patient, also of Monmouth County, has regained near complete functionality of both his arm and leg.
About Dr. Elkwood
Based in Shrewsbury, NJ, Dr. Andrew Elkwood is a plastic and reconstructive surgeon who performs unique operations involving nerve rebuilding and complex reconstruction. Dr. Elkwood and his team are among the few doctors in the country to perform operations such as brachial plexus reconstruction, facial reanimation, nerve transplantation, and nerve grafting to preserve erectile function after prostate cancer.