HOUSTON – A surgeon spent more than four hours reattaching and repairing the arteries, veins, tendons, nerves and soft tissue in the arm of an 11-year-old Freeport boy who was attacked by a shark over the weekend.
Aaron Perez was listed in fair condition Tuesday at Memorial Hermann Children's Hospital (search) in Houston, where he was airlifted Sunday evening. He suffered bite wounds to his arm and leg.
It wasn't clear whether Perez will gain full function of his hand, according to Dr. Emannuel Melissinos, who performed the surgery late Sunday following the attack.
Melissinos said the boy's hand was connected to his arm only by crushed bone before the surgery.
A friend of the boy's family said he was wading in a school of speckled trout at a beach near Freeport when the attack occurred. The shark first went for the boy's leg. The boy called for help and attempted to hit the shark, which then bit his arm, said family friend Don Townes of Lake Jackson.
The boy's father, Blas Perez, and Townes separated the boy from the shark by hitting it with their fishing rods.
Freeport Fire Chief John Stanford described the shark as a bull shark (search), which is aggressive and swims in shallow water.