Boston — The victim of a highly publicized, vicious attack by a chimpanzee in 2009 has received a full face transplant, CNN.com reports.
More than two years after her friend’s pet chimp mauled her, doctors at Boston’s Brigham and Women’s Hospital performed a full face transplant on Charla Nash. She will once again be able to eat solid foods and regain her sense of smell.
Ms. Nash lost her nose, upper jaw, most of the soft tissue on her face, upper and lower lips and both hands in the attack, which also left her blind.
The surgery, which was performed in May, involved removing some tissue and attaching skin and underlying muscle, based on vessels and nerves that provide motor and sensory functions. The entire hard palate and teeth also were transplanted. Surgeons also transplanted two hands to Ms. Nash, but had to remove them later due to circulation problems.
Surgeons report that in the next three months Ms. Nash will regain sensation to her face, and in six to nine months she will be able to smile, control her lips and otherwise express herself facially.