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March 27, 2011

London Hospital to Perform UK’s First Face and Hand Transplant

A team of surgeons at the Royal Free Hospital in London has announced that they will begin to assess patients for the UK's first face and hand transplant, a procedure that has been performed only once before in the world. The team is preparing to operate on several people with combined

By cms admin

A team of surgeons at the Royal Free Hospital in London has announced that they will begin to assess patients for the UK’s first face and hand transplant, a procedure that has been performed only once before in the world.

The team is preparing to operate on several people with combined hand and face injuries, but has not announced when the first operation might happen.

The hospital has asked the NHS’ National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence to assess the issues surrounding the operation, including how safe it was and how well it worked.

The news comes days after surgeons in the US performed the nation’s first full face transplant.

The world’s first and only face and hand transplant was performed in France in 1998. However, the patient died two months after the transplant due to complications from an infection.

To date, there have been 11 partial or full face transplants and about 60 hand transplants worldwide, including a small number of double hand transplants.

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