Monday, May 9, 2011

America's First Full-Face Transplant Recipient Speaks Out

For the first time in two years, 25-year-old Dallas Wiens appeared in public after after most of his features burned off and he was almost blinded when he hit a power line while painting a church in November 2009. Dallas received his new face in a 15-hour operation that saw 30 specialists working to replace his nose, lips, skin, muscle and nerves with tissue from an unnamed donor. “There are no words to truly describe the debt and gratitude or love that I possess for the donor's family," Dallas said today. "Tthe choices that they made have in a very great, in a very real way, changed my life and my daughter's. And, so from the bottom of my heart, and from the bottom of hers, we thank you very much." The surgery was paid for by the Department of Defense, which gave Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston a $3.4 million research grant for five transplants. The world's first full-face transplant took place in Spain last year.

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