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FenClare

Wooden hand and arm

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FenClare

Dear Forum members

A friend showed me today a photo of her grandfather who returned from the Great War with a wooden hand and arm. How usual was this? Any info gratefully received .

Regards

FenClare

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ss002d6252

It wasn't too unusual - prosthetics were still relatively basic and there wasn't the facility to make them out of plastic like now.

The official medical history on surgery has a section on various amputations. In 1915 the army established a special unit at Roehampton for the fitting of limbs and by 191920 they come up with some standard designs - wood or leather with steel joints.

 

"The hand most often used for a dress arm is one carved out of wood with fixed fingers, each strengthened by one or more inlaid tenons, the thumb, which is kept approximated to the index finger by a spring, being the only mobile part of the hand. Sometimes one of the cords is attached to the thumb so that the patient can voluntarily open this to grasp a small object"

Craig

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seaJane

I think you'll find pictures in the Welcome Institute's image bank if you need some comparisons.

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FenClare

Thank you both so much - I will pass on the information about Roehampton and look at the bank of photos.

Your speedy replies are much appreciated

FenClare

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seaJane

Wellcome Images here: 

https://wellcomeimages.org

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FenClare

Thank you - the image which shows a long wooden arm attached to a hand Is most like. I shall see if I can get a photo of it or maybe a name so as to trace where he received this injury. My friend said that as a s child she found  it  quite terrifying to see this wooden arm and hand.

Thank you

FenClare

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