DR Congo: British surgeons save boy's life by text
Vascular surgeon David Nott helped the 16-year-old while working 24-hour shifts with medical charity Medecins Sans Frontieres (MSF) in Rutshuru.
The boy's left arm had been ripped off and was badly infected and gangrenous.
Mr Nott, 52, had never performed the operation but followed instructions from a colleague who had.
The surgeon, who is based at Charing Cross Hospital in west London, said: "He was dying. He had about two or three days to live when I saw him."
The boy had been bitten by a hippo, the Daily Mail reports.
Mr Nott knew he needed to perform a forequarter amputation, which requires the surgeon to remove the collar bone and shoulder blade.
He contacted a colleague who had performed the operation before.
"I texted him and he texted back step by step instructions on how to do it," he said.
The surgeon had just one pint of blood and an elementary operating theatre, but the operation, performed in October, was a success and the teenager made a full recovery.
Photo: David Nott (C) volunteers for a month a year with the medical charity MSF
Source: BBC 03 Dec 08: SURGEON SAVES BOY'S LIFE BY TEXT