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January 30th, 2013
11:17 AM ET

Doctors detail veteran's rare double arm transplant


(CNN) - A U.S. Army infantryman who lost all four limbs in a 2009 roadside explosion in Iraq has undergone radical transplant surgery that may help him regain use of his arms.

Last month, the 26-year-old infantryman had successful surgery - a rare double arm transplant - at Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore.

Brendan Marrocco is one of only seven people in the country to successfully undergo the surgery, and the first quadruple-amputee soldier, according to Johns Hopkins.

The surgery, which took 13 hours and 16 orthopaedic and microvascular surgeons from five hospitals - was also the first bilateral arm transplant performed at Johns Hopkins. All of the surgeons volunteered their services; the surgery and rehabilitation costs were paid by the Department of Defense's Armed Forces Institute of Regenerative Medicine and Hopkins.

The team of surgeons rehearsed the procedure on cadaver arms four times over the past 18 months, said lead surgeon Dr. W.P. Andrew Lee, director of the Department of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery at Johns Hopkins.

This morning on "Starting Point," Dr. W.P. Andrew Lee and Dr. Gerald Brandacher with Johns Hopkins Medical Center describe the technique used in the surgery, and Marrocco's prognosis.

READ MORE: Iraq vet undergoes successful double-arm transplant

Filed under: Medical
January 11th, 2013
08:55 AM ET

Worst flu season in a decade; National Institutes of Health's Dr. Anthony Fauci's advice: 'wash your hands frequently'

CNN is bringing you the latest developments in the rising number of flu cases reported as the outbreak worsens around the country. Six more states are reporting widespread activity— that brings the total to 47 states, up from 41 the week before. The CDC has yet to release more information about which states were added and will issue an update later today.

We bring you some of the individual reports we’ve received from states. The Minnesota Health Department says 27 people have died from flu-related complications. South Carolina reports 22 flu-related deaths this season compared to one for all of 2011. Pennsylvania is also reporting 22 deaths, and six people are reported dead in Illinois. Eight are reported dead in Oklahoma, 15 are reported in Indiana, 7 in Arkansas and 18 flu related deaths in Massachusetts.

Dr. Anthony Fauci is the Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases at the National Institutes of Health. He joins “Starting Point” live from NIH headquarters in Bethesda, MD this morning with more. He explains the nature of this flu outbreak and how to protect yourself from getting it. “Washing your hands is critical,” Dr. Fauci says.

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Filed under: Flu • Medical • Medical Condition
December 11th, 2012
10:09 AM ET

Actor Frankie Muniz, 27, recovers from 'mini-stroke': 'Until something happens, you really don’t expect it'

Actor, racer and musician Frankie Muniz comes to “Starting Point” with a harrowing tale of a recent health scare.

Just two weeks ago, the former “Malcolm in the Middle” started feeling strange while riding his motorcycle when he noticed he'd lost vision in one eye. After that, he was having trouble understanding words, and his fiancée noticed that he couldn't speak properly. A visit to the hospital revealed that he had suffered a mini-stroke. Muniz turned 27 just last week and shares his story of recovery this morning.

Muniz had worked out earlier that morning and felt perfectly healthy until the symptoms came on during his motorcycle ride. “Personally, I felt invincible,” Muniz says. “Until something happens, you really don’t expect it.”

Muniz and his doctors are still uncertain what caused the mini-stroke. "[I've] never had a drink of alcohol," Muniz says. Drugs? "I've never even been near them."

But Muniz admits extreme stress may be a factor. "I can say that is the one thing in my life that I do need to work on."

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Filed under: Health • Medical • Medical Condition
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