Face transplant surgery successful

Updated: 2006-11-02 08:51

The second major operation of China's first face transplant patient was successful yesterday in Xijing Hospital in Xi'an, capital of Shaanxi Province, hospital officials said.

The operation restored the unnatural right eye and lips of Li Guoxing, a 30-year-old patient who was disfigured in 2004 after an attack by a bear, said Guo Shuzhong, director of the hospital's plastic surgery department.

The operation also flattened Li's swollen left face, said Guo.

Five doctors, three anesthetists and two nurses took part in the operation, which began at 7:40am and ended at 1pm.

Doctors had trouble distinguishing which part of Li's face was transplanted and which part was original, showing sound integration of Li's new and old faces, said Guo.

"Our goal is to make him unnoticeable walking on the street," Guo said.

However, doctors are uncertain whether the goal will be achieved, said Guo.

Li's right eye was seriously injured and might not fully recover after the operation, said Guo, the director.

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