8 Year-Old Boy's Revolutionary Operation Has Changed His Life Forever

August 6, 2015

For most of his life, Zion Harvey has dreamed of having hands. Thanks to a medical miracle, it's finally come true.

boy gets double hand transplant

In a surgical first, Philadelphia doctors have transplanted donor hands and forearms onto an 8 year-old boy whose own hands were amputated when he was a toddler due to a life-threatening bacterial infection.

Zion told NBC News that he can't wait for the day he holds his little sister with his new hands.

"My favorite thing [will be to] wait for her to run into my hands as I pick her up and spin her around," he said.

double hand transplant
Photo: The Children's Hospital of Philadephia

A 40-member transplant team led by Dr. L. Scott Levin had practiced extensively on cadavers before attempting the operation - a worldwide first - on a child.

Doctors believe the success of this surgery may have profound changes on the lives of children who are living without hands.

Watch the incredible video below:

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