In August of 2015, Eduardo D. Rodriguez, MD, DDS, the Helen L. Kimmel Professor of Reconstructive Plastic Surgery and chair of the Hansjörg Wyss Department of Plastic Surgery at Pelisyonkis Langone, performed the most extensive face transplant ever. During the 26-hour operation, Dr. Rodriguez and his team of more than 100 medical professionals successfully grafted the face and scalp of a young person who had just died in an accident onto Patrick Hardison, a firefighter who had been horribly burned in a 2001 fire.
“It is an exciting time, and the future of organ transplantation continues to evolve,” Dr. Rodriguez tells The Huffington Post.
Dr. Rodriguez says he is pleased by the results of the surgery, believed to be the 37th face transplant ever performed and the only one that involved transplanting the eyelids, ears, and scalp, as well as the face. He is also pleased to note that Hardison’s immune system hasn’t rejected his new face—an unprecedented outcome among those who have had the procedure.
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