THE mum of a quadruple amputee who successfully underwent a double hand transplant has revealed the ‘terrifying’ wait she went through to find out if her daughter had survived the ordeal.

Doreen Hutton told The Gazette she was in Spain when she found out her daughter Corinne was about to receive the risky operation after a five-year wait.

Corinne, from Lochwinnoch, who has become well-known for setting up amputee charity Finding Your Feet, lost her hands and lower legs in 2013 after a bout of pneumonia turned into sepsis.

READ MORE: Renfrewshire woman undergoes double hand transplant

The 48-year-old was given a five per cent chance of survival and chose to have the amputations to increase her chances.

Since then, the mum-of-one had been waiting patiently for a double hand transplant, suffering countless false alarms as doctors told her they had found a match, only to discover later on it wasn’t to be.

The process of finding a match is complex, with skin tone and blood type needing to be the same as the patient’s before the procedure can be performed.

So, when the call came last week to confirm a match had been found, Doreen said Corinne didn’t believe it would happen.

Thirty minutes later, an ambulance was on its way to take her to Leeds General Infirmary, where she would be given new hands.

At this point, Doreen was in Spain with her husband Colin, and struggled to get a flight back to the UK.

READ MORE: WATCH: The moment amputee Renfrewshire mum gets hands again

The flight they did secure would not arrive back until the operation was over, meaning they had to endure a nervous wait for news.

“It was absolutely terrifying,” said Doreen, 74.

“We could not do anything because we were stuck in Spain.

“We couldn’t get a plane out until the next morning, by which time she would have already been in Leeds.

“The operation finished on Tuesday night and we didn’t get back until Wednesday evening.

The Gazette:

A smile as Corinne’s recovery continues

“When my son phoned to say she had come out of theatre, I honestly was just happy she was alive.

“I never thought this day would come. There have been so many false alarms and she’d had a lot of blood transfusions, so there were lots of antibodies in the blood, which meant it was difficult to find a match. We had basically given up.”

Professor Andrew Hart, who carried out Corinne’s amputations five years ago, was assigned the task of giving her hands after having to take them away.

The operation took around 12 hours and had great risks attached to it, as surgeons had to connect nerves in her arms with those in the donor hands, along with the blood vessels and tendons.

Corinne’s body could have rejected the hands and there was a chance she would not survive.

The Gazette:

Corinne can hold son Rory’s hand again

But, true to her resilient and determined nature, Corinne – who became the first female quadruple amputee to reach the summit of Mount Kilimanjaro last year – pulled through.

Doreen added: “I wasn’t terribly enthusiastic about it all really when the day did come, because I didn’t like what was involved in it.

“Corinne was always up and down about it. She wanted hands at first, then she didn’t, then she thought it would be great. And then, after a while, you just stop talking about it.

“She was desperate to hold her son’s hand again.”

Doreen said it has been difficult as a parent to watch Corinne go through her various traumas but she is hugely proud of the way she has taken it all in her stride.

Along with Colin, Corinne’s brothers Scott and Davy and her son Rory, she can now only hope the operation proves to be a long-term success.

Doreen added: “When she got her amputations, it was desperate and we are very lucky to have her.

“The hope is she will lead a normal life eventually. She’ll be able to hold a pen and a knife and fork again.

“At the moment, though, her hands have to be completely still. They are in casts.

“It will be months and months before she can really use them. She is quite distressed that she can’t use her iPhone at the moment!

READ MORE: Quadruple amputee on top of the world after climbing Kilimanjaro

“She truly sees them as her hands though. She has taken to them completely and the family of the donor have been wonderful. Corinne is so grateful to them.

“She is absolutely amazing. I could never have done what she has done.

“We just want to give a massive thanks to all the doctors involved in such an intricate procedure.”