On May 9, 2011, Dallas Wiens, the first full face transplant, made his first appearance in public since his operation in March. In the fifteen hour procedure he received, from an anonymous donor, nose, muscle, nerves, skin, and lips. The cost of the operation was paid in full by the United States Military. They are hoping to use the findings from this surgery to help soldiers who have been wounded and have severe facial injuries.
In November, 2008, Dallas Wiens was painting on a church when he hit a power line. This accident left him blind with his features all but burned away. According to Mr. Weins, “As time went on….I was able to smell again and breathe through my nose.” The thing that he said he could smell first was the hospital lasagna.
The surgeons who did the face transplant was not able to reverse his blindness. In addition, some of his nerves that were damaged will only give him partial sensations on his left side, including his cheek and forehead. The next 6 to 9 months will tell when he will begin to feel light touches on his face anywhere.
One of the reasons that Mr. Wein decided to go ahead with the transplant was so he could feel kisses from his daughter and smile again. The hospital received a three point four million dollar research grant for 5 transplants from the Department of Defense.
There have been approximately 12 face transplants done in France, China, Spain, and the United States.
Face transplant recipients are now ‘brothers’
Boston Globe (blog), on Wed, 11 May 2011 05:06:21 -0700
By Liz Kowalczyk, Globe Staff Since receiving a full face transplant at Brigham and Women’s Hospital last month, Mitch Hunter hasn’t been shy about going out. Hunter, 30, who was a near-recluse in the first years following the 2001 accident that left …
Speedway man continues recovery from face transplant
Indianapolis Star, on Wed, 11 May 2011 04:21:20 -0700
Mitch Hunter’s new face is still swollen, but the 30-year-old Speedway man’s recovery from a full face transplant is right on track, says his medical team at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston this week. Since his rare transplant operation less …
Man shows off first US full face transplant
Times of Malta, on Wed, 11 May 2011 02:34:17 -0700
A young father who was terribly disfigured in an electrical accident showed off his new look alongside doctors who performed the US first full face transplant. Visibly moved as he described how his young daughter called him “handsome” and how the first …