The world's first face transplant recipient has undergone a further graft on Friday, even as controversy surrounds her surgery.
Isabelle Dinoire, 38, in Lyons, France, received a second transplant of bone marrow and stem cells from the same donor, which had been successful, doctors said. This is meant to cut the risk of Miss Dinoire rejecting the face.
AdvertisementThe technique was developed by Prof Jean-Michel Dubernard, who helped lead the original surgery and who also carried out the world's first hand transplants.
The Frenchwoman received the nose, lips and chin of a donor after being horrifically injured by her pet dog.
Pioneering surgeons then watched amazed as the new face came alive, turning pink as soon as Isabelle's blood flowed into it.
A 50-strong team of medics in Amiens, northern France, worked for 15 hours to perform the transplant. Now doctors must now wait to see if it is a long-term success The divorcee, who had begged: "Make me pretty again", was making excellent progress in a Lyon hospital last night.
Surgeons carried out the delicate task using the latest microsurgery techniques last month.
Isabelle's lower face was ripped to shreds as her labrador Tania anxiously pawed at her to wake her after an overdose of tablets.
But it will be six months before she gains full feeling and movement.
There is also the risk of a psychological reaction to having another person's face.
And she must take drugs all her life to stop her body rejecting the transplant.
THE Frenchwoman who had the world's first face transplant has signed a deal that could make her more than E150,000 ($235,000) from the sale of photographs and a film of the operation.
As the row over the ethics of the transplant escalated, it emerged that Isabelle Dinoire, 38, had agreed to let British documentary maker Michael Hughes film the graft at Amiens University Hospital in northern France.
The deal was signed by Hughes, the patient and the medical team in August - three months before the operation and before a donor had been found.
Ms Dinoire told Le Parisien newspaper on Wednesday she felt very well, but that she had been upset by the media coverage. "I need to live through these moments serenely," she said. "I also want my family to be left out of all this."
Under the deal, which could be worth more than E150,000, Ms Dinoire will keep all the profits from the sale of the photographs and the film after deducting Hughes's costs and the fees of the agency distributing his work.
The ethics of the face transplant continue to divide France, despite much goodwill towards Miss Dinoire, whose dog savaged her face.
Reports that the dog had been trying to revive her after a suicide attempt - denied by Prof Dubernard - have led to doubts about her psychological suitability for surgery.
Peter Butler, a consultant plastic surgeon of the Royal Free and University College Medical School in London, said such surgery could take place in Britain within a year, but only after all medical and ethical questions had been satisfactorily answered.