[googlead tip=”patrat_mic” aliniat=”dreapta”]After almost three months from Charla Nash face transplant Brigham and Women’s Hospital (BWH), Boston, released a picture of her new visage on Thursday, August 11.
While the postoperative swellings and bruises vanished, Charla, who was photographed in the hospital bed looks spectacularly different. She has a new nose, new lips, new palate and new skin. Charla is now able to eat solid food. She can breathe through her nose and even she can smell and taste the food.
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Dr. Bohdan Pomahac, director of the BWH Plastic Surgery Transplantation Program, is satisfied with recovery progress. He led the team that gave Charla a new appearance. Over thirty physicians, plastic surgery doctors, orthopedists, anesthesiologists and nurses contributed to the full face transplant procedure which was performed on May this year.
In 2009 Charla Nash suffered terrible injuries after Sandra Herold’s 200-pound (91 kg) pet chimpanzee, Travis, attacked her. It ripped her lips, nose and eyes and it tore her hands making her defaced and blind.
Since then, Charla covered her disfigured face with a hat and a veil, but she unveiled on a November 2009 episode of “Oprah”. She could not eat any but liquid food, she was not able to breathe through her nose, she could not smell or taste food.
Charla Nash face transplant replaced her entire facial area (nose, lips, facial skin, muscles, and nerves) and it took over twenty hours. She underwent face and double hand transplant at the same time. After the surgery she developed kidney failure and pneumonia and that affected blood circulation to the hands. The hands became septic and they had to be removed.
Charla and her family expressed their gratitude for the medical team, for anonymous female donor and her family, they also thanked the doctors at the Stamford Hospital in Connecticut, where she was treated after the attack, and at the Cleveland Clinic, where she was admitted for the long rehabilitation program.
Charla Nash face transplant is the third full face transplantation performed by plastic surgery doctors from BWH and it is also the third operation of this kind in US.
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The first world full face transplantation was done in Spain in 2010 and it is the second time when face and double hand transplant were done simultaneously. The first one was in France in 2009, but the patient died in 2010.
Photos credits from left to right: Courtesy of the Nash family, Brigham and Women’s Hospital, by Lightchaser Photography