Bristol toe-thumb man's bandages removed

Mr Byrne said he wanted to get back to work as soon as possible

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A man from Bristol whose big toe was attached in place of his severed thumb has had the bandages removed.

James Byrne, 29, from Fishponds, cut his left thumb last December while sawing through wood.

After an attempt to re-attach his damaged thumb failed, plastic surgeons at Frenchay Hospital transplanted his left big toe to his hand.

Mr Byrne said the toe was "fantastic" but he had got "mixed reactions" from friends and family.

"Some people have thought it is really, really cool and quite an amazing thing and others have been totally repulsed and don't want to look at it," he said.

"It's quite badly scarred but once that's calmed down I'm sure people will just forget about it and just carry on as normal."

Mr Byrne said the new digit still looked more like something from his foot than his hand.

"When I look at it I see a toe. I don't think it looks like anything other than a big toe."

He added that surgeons were planning to carry out plastic surgery next year to reduce the size of the toe.

He added that he planned to go back to work as a paver when he got the all-clear from doctors.

The surgery was carried out at the regional micro-surgery centre at Frenchay.

Surgeon Umraz Khan said the gain of a thumb outweighed the loss of a toe as it "is not as disabling".

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