March 12, 2010— -- Chris Pollack, 41, of Harrisburg, Pa., lost both of his hands in a tractor accident on his farm. A mechanic and National Guardsman, Pollack found that he could no longer work. And with prosthetic hands, Pollack said he could not feel his children's touch.
"I thought, 'God, just let me die,'" he said.
Then, one day, he read an article about the opportunity to receive a hand transplant through the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, and he applied.
But finding a perfect match takes more than just the right blood type. The perfect hands needed to come from a man with the same sized hands and skin color. On his right side, Pollack needed a new elbow and forearm in addition to a hand.
Two months later, Pollack got a call that would change his life.
"I heard the house phone ring. And it never rings after 8 p.m.," said Pollack. "And I knew at the time, they were calling."