Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Where Does My Leg Go?

Today started with a simple question: what happens to my right leg after it's amputated?  Of course, there have been a lot of ideas on what should happen:

  • Turn it into a leg lamp.  We'd need to be careful in case it's fra-gee-lay.
  • Hire a taxidermist to mount it on my wall.  Because that's not weird.
  • Toe shot.  Yes, this is a real thing.
  • Bury it.
  • Donate it to science.
  • Get a tattoo before my amputation (not exactly the same category, but worth mentioning).

While scheduling another pre-op appointment with Elliot to get some measurements on where he'd like Dr. Attinger to try and make the cut, I got an opportunity to ask him what happens.

The answer?

Apparently they turn them all into leg lamps.  I know, I wasn't expecting that either.  Good to know my leg will illuminate some creepy dude's basement man cave.

Okay, no.  This is not what Elliot told me.  I promise the jokes get better when I start taking the pain medication next week.

The hospital most likely will place the leg into a bag and incinerate it to reduce it down to a small and economical volume.  This also minimizes the risk of spreading infectious diseases.  Once converted into ash it will be deposited into local landfill where it will join all of my Chipotle wrappers.

Given a choice, I prefer to donate the leg to the cadaver lab so medical students and researchers have access to the limb.  Most amputated legs are likely gangrenous and nasty, so this could be a good opportunity to kick out some sweet science.  I'll look into this option and if it's available this is what we'll most likely do.  I'm sure after the science is completed the leg will still end up in an incinerator.

The tattoo idea was my favorite one by far.  I'd totally get one if it didn't prevent me from having a surgery next week due to the elevated risk of infection.


  1. I'm thinking a tatoo of a dotted line around the leg with a tatoo of instructions. " TO REMOVE THE LEG CUT ALONG DOTTED LINE. PLEASE INCINERATE THE SMALLER PIECE."

  2. Love the tattoo idea above! Also love that your leg's final hurrah "could be a good opportunity to KICK out some sweet science." I adore bad wordplay, but I expect better things after the pain meds are administered.