Plastic Surgery the Key to Historical First U.S. Full Face Transplant
ASPS Member Surgeons Lead The Way
ARLINGTON HEIGHTS, Ill. - The American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS), is proud to announce multiple members participated in last week's first full face transplant on 25-year-old burn victim Dallas Wiens of Texas. More than 30 medical professionals assisted Wiens who suffered from fourth-degree burns on his face due to a work-related accident in 2008. Last week's 15-hour surgery at Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston marks the first successful full face transplant in the United States. ASPS Member Surgeon Bohdan Pomahac, MD led the effort, and ASPS Member Surgeon Jeffrey Janis, MD, of Parkland Memorial Hospital in Dallas also participated and performed more than 20 reconstructive surgeries on Wiens previously.
"The key to our success was the multidisciplinary team effort by both the Boston and Dallas medical teams," Dr. Janis said. "Dallas is a remarkable patient. The reason we strive to push innovation and tackle new frontiers is because of patients with devastating injuries like him."
While Wiens is the first full face transplant recipient, ASPS Member Surgeons have been at the forefront of transplantation techniques for years. ASPS Member Surgeon Maria Siemionow, MD performed the first U.S. partial face transplant at the Cleveland Clinic in 2008, and in 2009 Dr. Pomahac performed a transplant replacing the entire middle region of the patients face with tissue from a donor. Additionally, in 2006, the ASPS and the American Society for Reconstructive Microsurgery released a landmark document Facial Transplantation -ASPS/ASRM Guiding Principles, to assist plastic surgeons considering participation in facial transplantation procedures.
"Dr. Pomahac and his team should be congratulated for this significant technical triumph," said ASPS Member Surgeon W. P. Andrew Lee, MD, Professor and Chairman of the Department of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. "Those of us who have engaged in composite tissue allo-transplantation firmly believe it will transform reconstructive surgery by offering body parts that otherwise cannot be reconstructed by using the body's own tissues."
This full-face transplant represents a significant milestone in plastic surgery, and Dr. Janis reports Wiens is recovering well and will help lead the charge as an advocate for facial transplantation in the future. "Dallas will restore hope to those that have lost it along the way because of the success he's had," Dr. Janis said.
The American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS) is the largest organization of board-certified plastic surgeons in the world. Representing more than 11,000 physician members worldwide, the society is recognized as a leading authority and information source on cosmetic and reconstructive plastic surgery. ASPS comprises more than 92 percent of all board-certified plastic surgeons in the United States. Founded in 1931, the society represents physicians certified by The American Board of Plastic Surgery or The Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada.