ope, it’s not the plot from a creepy sci-fi movie: A doctor from Delray Beach, Fla., has used a new procedure to grow back a man’s finger. Paul Halpern, 33, had most of his index finger bitten off by a horse who thought it was a piece of cookie. He turned up at the office of Dr. Eugenio Rodriguez for help, his finger in a plastic bag. The tissue was badly damaged, so Dr. Rodriguez used bladder tissue from a pig to make a template of the finger, which he attached to Halpern’s stump. The amazing result: The finger’s cells, bone, skin and nail grew into the template.
Dr. Rodriguez specializes in healing and regeneration, but this was a landmark case, even for him. “Itâ€™s very interesting to see a patient heal,” he says. “Thatâ€™s my passion â€” wound healing. It is fascinating to have [these] results.” Halpern is expected to make a full recovery in just 12 weeks.