The decade of face transplant outcomes
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At the 10th year anniversary of the first face transplantation, 37 patients worldwide, were the recipients of faces coming from human donors. Five patients died due to complications, noncompliance with immunosuppressive medications and development of cancer. Despite the initial debates and ethical concerns, face transplantation became a clinical reality with satisfactory functional outcomes. The areas of controversy still include the impact of life-long immunosuppression on otherwise healthy patients as well as the selection process of face transplant candidates. Other concerns include financial support for this new generation of transplants as well as social re-integration and patients return to work after face transplantation. Based on over 20 years of research experience in the field of vascularized composite allotransplantation (VCA), and clinical experience as a leading surgeon of the US first face transplantation, this review will summarize the well—known facts as well as unexpected outcomes and challenges of face transplantation.
Conflict of interest
The authors declare that they have no competing interests.
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