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Face Transplants?

Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
An interesting, if somewhat disturbing story is coming from France.

Apparently the world's first face transplant has taken place - details.

Personally, I see this as a great development in the plastics field - especially after major crashes. It does worry me that it will be another draw in NHS resources if we did this over here, but I guess if there is a need can we refuse. In fact now that the treatment is available in the EU we already have an obligation to consider funding patients to have the operation in France - it will just come down to the other discussions we have had of use of resources...

What do you think, given the comments in the article about the fact that the patients face will not look like the donors?

Comments

  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    B00004CXIG.02.LZZZZZZZ.jpg



    :p
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Can I have Viggo Mortensen's face please? lol.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Can I have Viggo Mortensen's face please? lol.
    What do you think, given the comments in the article about the fact that the patients face will not look like the donors?

    D'oh

    :p
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Shucks, nevermind! :razz:
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    An interesting, if somewhat disturbing story is coming from France.

    Apparently the world's first face transplant has taken place - details.

    Personally, I see this as a great development in the plastics field - especially after major crashes. It does worry me that it will be another draw in NHS resources if we did this over here, but I guess if there is a need can we refuse. In fact now that the treatment is available in the EU we already have an obligation to consider funding patients to have the operation in France - it will just come down to the other discussions we have had of use of resources...

    What do you think, given the comments in the article about the fact that the patients face will not look like the donors?

    Seems fair enough to me - if you've been disfigured by burns or a dog attack it doesn't seem to be a vanity desire for cosmetic surgery.

    Not sure about you're funding point because surely most major advances in medicine/surgery lead to an increase in costs - its not just this one
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    NQA wrote:
    Not sure about you're funding point because surely most major advances in medicine/surgery lead to an increase in costs - its not just this one

    They certainly do, but the impact isn't always very big. Where something like this - which cannot be very cheap - becomes available then it can have a major impact. Assuming that central Govt doesn't find additional money then we will need to find the cash from somewhere else.

    Part of that would come through changes to existing plastic service which this would stop but part comes from stopping something else.

    It's like my rant about Herceptin. It will cost us £5m next year to fund that drug in my county. That will have to come from somewhere, it may be from reduced costs of cancer care but all that will happen is the waiting times will reduce but the same number of patients will be seen in year, so I don't know where we will get that sort of cash from...
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Cash, cash and cash. Where do they fund the money for this then? I'd rather money would stay in cancer care as MoK suggested than stroll away to fix someone's face. What does it cost to have this plastic surgery anyway?

    Insurance?

    Protect your face today - or you might loose it tomorrow.

    Depends on where the money is coming from and how much it is in the end.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    i find it weird that it must come from a 'beating heart' donor. :/ it just seems... bizarre
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    How big will be the impact at first? I assume it would be pretty low as they'll only be a small number of surgeons with the skills (and therefore limited numbers of operations). Also whats the cost compared to normal facial reconstruction?

    Also PCTs already have to make difficult decisions over which surgical procedures they fund (and how many) and what drugs they prescribe, so this would just be another one of the choices.
  • Teh_GerbilTeh_Gerbil Stalin's Organist Posts: 13,327
    Woo for terrible accident victims and criminals! Boo for everyone else.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    NQA wrote:
    How big will be the impact at first? I assume it would be pretty low as they'll only be a small number of surgeons with the skills (and therefore limited numbers of operations). Also whats the cost compared to normal facial reconstruction?

    Also PCTs already have to make difficult decisions over which surgical procedures they fund (and how many) and what drugs they prescribe, so this would just be another one of the choices.

    I think this would be incorporated into facial reconstruction, rather than a dramatically different approach. I'm not sure though.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    I'd hate to think what would happen if the tissue is rejected. :eek:

    I always thought such a thing was plausable but some way off.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Braineater wrote:
    I'd hate to think what would happen if the tissue is rejected. :eek:
    .

    They showed that on Nip Tuck :p Took the face off a brain dead comatose woman and put it on a permantly disfigured woman. She had already had dozens of graphs and surgeries with no help. They really showed the ups and downs of the situation.

    I guess, so long as both people (or the people legally responsible for both parties) agree with it, I don't really see why not. Its not like your going to be walking down the street and all the sudden see the face of your dead mother. If they can take skin off your ass and stick it on your face in a graph, why not just take another face. As whoever said before, its not their bones, not the persons facial structure so you're not going to look like them.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Technology never fails to amaze me. Surely this will become widespread in the decade or so for people injured in accidents. Can't help but think public opinion would be different if it was being used purely for cosmetic uses.

    It is weird it has to come from a beating heart donor. Not sure how happy I'd be about that...
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Braineater wrote:
    I'd hate to think what would happen if the tissue is rejected. :eek:

    I .
    was it newsnight i was watching?

    whatever ...this came up.
    the rebuilt mouth ...jaw teeth etc should be ok but there was some concern about tissue rejection ...which could result in the patient being a lot more disfigured than before they had the surgery.

    they are planning the first one in the uk right now apparently.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Ego wrote:
    Technology never fails to amaze me. Surely this will become widespread in the decade or so for people injured in accidents. Can't help but think public opinion would be different if it was being used purely for cosmetic uses.

    It is weird it has to come from a beating heart donor. Not sure how happy I'd be about that...

    Someone on their deathbed says to you that you can have their nose. So... weird!
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    no one will want my face ...been lived in to long.
    doesn't even fit me properly anymore.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    doesn't even fit me properly anymore.
    :lol:

    Surely they can do autologous skin grafts? It's hard enough getting donor organs these days, so I can't imagine the supply being too great. And indeed the effects of rejection would be devastating. A waste of effort if you ask me - we should be investing in research into artificial skins or other forms of skin repair.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Kentish wrote:
    :lol:

    we should be investing in research into artificial skins or other forms of skin repair.
    i was under the impression that growing real skin had come a long way.
    you take cells from the patient and then grow skin which doesn't get rejected.
    apparently this is impossible with lips.
    they are a unique part of the body.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    I don't know, but I wouldn't want my face transplanted and I wouldn't want to receive one either. There is a limit, one feels.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Kentish wrote:
    I don't know, but I wouldn't want my face transplanted and I wouldn't want to receive one either. There is a limit, one feels.
    I wouldnt have a problem donating my face to some lucky girl :P, id be happy to doante anything once i was past saving.
    Id also be happy to receive one if i needed it I think.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    quarfly wrote:
    I'd rather money would stay in cancer care as MoK suggested than stroll away to fix someone's face.

    Er.. that wasn't what I was suggesting. I was just using Herceptin as an example of new development which aren't free or "cost neutral".
    What does it cost to have this plastic surgery anyway?

    As this was the first, clearly there is no cost being discussed at the moment.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    If my face was completely damaged then I would like such a thing to be avaliable.
    That said, I think the NHS needs to sort other things first. Like waiting lists :(
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    INteresting why the woman had the transplant, though.

    According to her family, the dog mauled her because she had tried to commit suicide with a drugs OD, and the dog actually saved her life. Story.

    I'm all in favour of it.
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