Polish man gets quick face transplant after injury

May 22, 2013 • National News

This computerized tomography provided by the Cancer Center and Institute of Oncology in Gliwice, Poland, shows the skull of a 33-year-old Polish man after it was damaged in a work accident, right, alongside the healthy skull of another person. Polish doctors performed a total face transplant on the man on May 15 in a 27-hour operation. In a news conference on Wednesday they said it was the first time a life-saving face transplant was carried out soon after a recipient suffered damage. There have been several other transplants worldwide in recent years but in those cases doctors had months or years to prepare. The Polish patient suffered his accident on April 23, 2013.(AP Photo/Cancer Center and Institute of Oncology in Gliwice)

WARSAW, Poland (AP) — A 33-year-old Polish man received a face transplant just three weeks after being disfigured in a workplace accident, in what his doctors said Wednesday is the fastest time frame to date for such an operation. It was Poland’s first face transplant.

Face transplants are extraordinarily complicated and relatively rare procedures that usually require extensive preparation of the recipient over a period of months or years. But medical officials said the Polish patient’s condition was deteriorating so rapidly that a transplant was seen as the only way to save his life. The patient is now being watched for any potential infections.

In a photo taken Tuesday, just six days after the surgery, the patient, identified only by his first name, Grzegorz, was shown giving a thumbs-up sign from his Login to read more

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