Face transplant performed on woman mauled by chimpanzee

Reuters News
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Posted: Jun 10, 2011 9:08 AM

BOSTON (Reuters) - A Connecticut woman mauled by a chimpanzee in 2009 has received a full face transplant, the third surgery of its kind performed in the country, Boston's Brigham and Women's Hospital said on Friday.

Charla Nash was hurt after a friend's 200-pound pet chimpanzee Travis went on a rampage. The animal was eventually shot and killed by police.

Nash's face was rebuilt last month by a medical team of more than 30 physicians, nurses, anesthesiologists and residents, the hospital announced on Friday.

Working for more than 20 hours, the team replaced Nash's nose, lips, facial skin, muscles of facial animation and nerves.

The hospital said a double hand transplant was also attempted, but the hands did not thrive and were removed.

Brigham and Women's, a teaching affiliate of Harvard Medical School, successfully performed the two previous full face transplants earlier this year.

Dallas Wiens, the 26-year-old first full face transplant recipient in the United States, headed home to Texas last month to be with his young daughter, continue his facial muscle rehabilitation and resume his normal life.

The world's first full face transplant was completed in Spain in 2010.

(Reporting by Lauren Keiper; Editing by Barbara Goldberg and Greg McCune)