Last month, it was reported that a 22-year-old man in China who, through a medical procedure, has been growing a nose on his forehead to replace his damaged one. Now, Chinese doctors have performed a similar task for a burned teen girl by growing new face parts on her chest.
As reported by the Global Times, doctors in China’s Fujian Province grafted skin from 17-year-old Xu Jianmei’s thigh to grow the face. Similar to Xiaolian’s nose surgery, Xu’s surgeon is cautiously hopeful the new face parts will give the girl a new lease on life
From the Global Times:
Xu Jianmei, a resident of a small fishing village, was severely disfigured in a fire that occurred when she was five years old. She lost her chin, eyelids, and a large part of her right ear. She was not able to receive treatment during the optimal treatment time, as her family could not afford it.
But last year, the chance to get a new face came to her after doctors boldly proposed growing a new face on her chest using tissue grafted from her leg.
“First, we took a piece of blood vessel fascia from her thigh and implanted it in her chest. Then we inserted a skin expander beneath the part of skin where the blood vessel fascia was planted, so that the part could expand and produce enough skin for her new face,” Jiang Chenghong, Xu’s surgeon, explained.
This past Monday (Oct. 21), the last of Xu’s surgeries were completed. Dr. Jiang cautioned, however, that there will be a wait-and-see approach.
“With her new face, she will be able to express herself in a more precise way. She will even be able to blush when her emotions change”, said Jiang,” but it may take a long time.”
Science is pretty awesome, right?
Check the gallery to see photos of Xu. A warning: the images may be disturbing to some. Hit the flip to see photos and a clip regarding Xu’s surgery from China View.
Photos: China View, Global Times