May 6, 1985 |
Fort Worth, Texas
|Known for||First Full Face Transplant in the US|
(m. 2013 - Present)
Dallas Wiens (born May 6, 1985) is the first United States recipient of a full face transplant, performed at the Brigham and Women's Hospital during the week of March 14, 2011. It was the first such operation in United States and the third in the world.
Wiens was critically burned by a high voltage wire on November 13, 2008, when he was painting Ridglea Baptist Church in Fort Worth. He was standing inside the cherry picker when his forehead made contact with a high-voltage wire. Transported by helicopter to Parkland Memorial Hospital, surgeons spent 36 hours over two days working to save Wiens’ life.
Wiens was left permanently blind and without lips, a nose or eyebrows. Doctors told the family that Wiens likely would be paralyzed from the neck down and would never speak or produce enough saliva to eat solid food. They put him in a medically induced coma for three months. After awakening, he made unprecedented progress and left the hospital in spring 2009. In May 2010 he started walking.
In March 2011, a transplant team of more than 30 doctors, including eight surgeons and doctors and nurses from multiple disciplines, led by MUDr. Bohdan Pomahač, performed a full face transplant at Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston. It took 15 hours. Wiens' sight could not be recovered but he has been able to talk on the phone and has regained his sense of smell. The operation was paid for with the help of the US Department of Defense, which hopes to gain knowledge from the procedure to help soldiers suffering from facial injuries.
Wiens has undergone about two dozen operations since the accident in 2008. He will need more surgery in the future.
On May 9, 2011, Wiens made his first public appearance after the surgery, wearing dark sunglasses. He said that his young daughter told him "Daddy, you're so handsome" when she saw him after the operation. He also said of his new face, "It feels as if it has become my own."
On March 30, 2013, Weins married fellow Parkland Hospital burn patient Jamie Nash of Garland, Texas, who he met at a burn survivors support group. They married at the same church where Weins had been burned less than four-and-a-half years earlier. Nash had received burns to her legs, back, and hands from a 2010 car accident in Ennis, Texas.
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- "Miracle Transplant: Wearing the Face of a Dead Man
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- Marchione, Marilynn; Contreras, Russell (AP) (2011-03-21). "Full-face transplant a first in U.S.; military helps pay for operation". Fayetteville Observer. Archived from the original on 2012-01-20.
- "Face transplant: Dallas Wiens hails regained smell". BBC News. 2011-05-09. Retrieved 2011-05-11.
- Tziperman Lotan, Gal (2013-03-30). "First full face transplant recipient married in Texas". Boston Globe.