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Gran Had Part Of Leg Removed So It Could Be Treated In Different Hospital And Reattached

Amelia Ward

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Gran Had Part Of Leg Removed So It Could Be Treated In Different Hospital And Reattached

Warning: This article contains graphic images and footage

A cancer patient who had part of her leg removed so it could be treated in another hospital and later reattached has said it was like 'science fiction'.

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Jan Ritson, 71, had started to have severe pain in her lower back during lockdown, but because of coronavirus, she was unable to get a doctors appointment.

She had breast cancer twice in the past and after she had a diagnosis of a malignant tumour on her left shin bone, she was told the easiest way around it was to amputate her leg.

But the gran wasn't having any of it, instead undergoing a 12-hour op that meant taking part of the bone from her leg off and taking it to another hospital and treating it with radiation. It was then re-attached, all while she was under anaesthetic.

Credit: SWNS
Credit: SWNS

After the eight inch section of Mrs Ritson's tibia was removed at the Golden Jubilee Hospital in West Dunbartonshire, it was sent on a 20-minute journey to the Beatson Cancer Centre in a sterile container.

After two hours of treatment with extra-corporeal (outside the body) irradiation, the bone was re-packaged and taken back to be re-inserted into her leg.

Although the radiation treated the cancer, it also effectively killed the bone. This meant it wouldn't get a blood supply. But medics used bone from her fibula to bring the tibia back to life. I don't know about you, but my mind is blown.

Credit: SWNS
Credit: SWNS

Mrs Ritson said: "It's like something out of science fiction.

"It's absolutely mind-blowing what they have achieved."

The surgery was captured on video and Mrs Ritson was able to watch the footage from her hospital bed.

She added: "They showed me the part where they removed the bone and put it into the special box.

"It was a bit bizarre, an out-of-body experience."

Credit: SWNS
Credit: SWNS

Gran-of-one Mrs Ritson said: "Initially they thought there was no way I could take an operation like that because of my age but that was before I saw Mr [Ashish] Mahendra who was happy to try the operation because I'm fit and healthy.

"I've had cancer diagnoses twice in the past and I knew I couldn't just live with it so I knew something needed to be done, whatever that was.

"It was a little bit daunting, I have to say, knowing that if the operation hadn't worked out that it would mean an amputation.

Credit: SWNS
Credit: SWNS

"That really worried me, but I got my head round it and accepted that's what it was going to be.

"Now that it's done I feel wonderful and I'm now in the healing process where I have to do a good job too to make me better and whole, maybe get back to some golf at some point hopefully.

"Before the operation I hadn't been able to do much like gardening or anything so just getting back to normal life and not being wheeled about in a chair would be just magic, wonderful."

Surgeon Mr Mahendra said: "The patient is doing really well so far and is very grateful the cancer is out.

"She is healing well but has a long road ahead and remains under regular follow-up."

Featured Image Credit: SWNS

Topics: UK News, Interesting

Amelia Ward
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