Isabelle Dinoire

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Isabelle Dinoire
Born 1967 (age 46–47)
Valenciennes, France
Known for first partial face transplant

Isabelle Dinoire, born 1967, was the first person to undergo a partial face transplant, after her Labrador retriever mauled her in May 2005.

Personal life[edit]

Dinoire lives in Valenciennes, northern France, and she is the mother of two children.[1]

According to The Australian, she has signed a contract with British documentary maker Michael Hughes.

Mutilation incident[edit]

Dinoire's dog "chewed her face after she passed out from an overdose of sleeping pills."[2] Some reports following the initial surgery claim that her daughter said that the black Labrador cross (named Tania) was "frantically" trying to wake Dinoire after she took sleeping pills in a suicide attempt, and Dinoire wrote about her suicidal feelings in her own memoir.[3] The hospital denied this.[citation needed] In a statement made on 6 February 2006, Dinoire said that "after a very upsetting week, with many personal problems, I took some pills to forget ... I fainted and fell on the ground, hitting a piece of furniture."[4]

Dinoire's daughter reported that the family is sure that the dog, which was ordered to be euthanized, mutilated Dinoire by accident.[5] They believe that the damage was caused when the dog, finding Dinoire wouldn't wake up, got more and more frantic, and began scratching and clawing her.[5][6] Dinoire was "heartbroken" when Tania was forced to be euthanized and kept a picture of the Labrador by her hospital bed;[7] she later bought another dog to aid in her recovery after surgery.[5]

Dinoire's injuries affected her nose, lips, chin, and cheeks.[2] She wore a surgical mask to cover the injuries on the lower part of her face, as the upper face was not affected.[5]

Doctors and the media debated whether the donor and/or the recipient had attempted suicide, with reports stating that the donor had hanged herself.[7] The family of the donor told the funeral director who handled the donor's death that the donor had an accidental death. Local French newspapers stated that Dinoire's daughter said that the mother attempted to commit suicide. Dubernard said that the recipient did not try to kill herself. Olivier Jardé, an orthopedic surgeon from Amiens and a member of the French National Assembly, said that both the donor and the recipient attempted suicide.[8] The Sunday Times, a British newspaper, stated that Dinoire said via a telephone interview that she tried to commit suicide.[8] In her 2007 memoir, Dinoire stated that the donor had killed herself, which "gave Dinoire a feeling of sisterhood" with the donor.[3]

Partial face transplant[edit]

The first partial face transplant surgery on a living human was performed on Dinoire on 27 November 2005 by Professor Bernard Devauchelle, assisted by Professor Jean-Michel Dubernard at the Centre hospitalier Universitaire Nord in Amiens, France. A triangle of face tissue, including the nose and mouth, was taken from a brain-dead female donor and grafted onto the patient.[9][10] "Scientists elsewhere have performed scalp and ear transplants. However, the claim is the first for a mouth and nose transplant. Experts say the mouth and nose are the most difficult parts of the face to transplant."[11] Dinoire was also given bone marrow cells to prevent rejection of the tissue.[12] Exactly one year following the partial face transplant, Dinoire stated she had the ability to smile again. On 28 November 2006, Dinoire's surgeon, Bernard Devauchelle, said that over the past year Dinoire’s scars had become far less prominent.[13]

There has been a change in her appearance. Her original face had a wide, tilted nose, a prominent chin and thin lips. The donated face has given her a straight and narrow nose, a smaller chin and a fuller mouth. In 2008, Dinoire admitted in an interview that she sometimes struggles to accept the appearance of her transplanted face, as she had expected it to look more like her own, saying: "It takes an awful lot of time to get used to someone else's face." In the same interview, she reported that full sensitivity had returned to her face.[14]

The Associated Press released a picture of Dinoire on 28 November 2006, one year after the operation. The French newspaper Le Monde's website explained on 2 December 2006 that the Associated Press had eliminated the picture, because "The hair of Isabelle Dinoire and the background of this image were manipulated by the source."

For the two-year anniversary, her doctors published an article in the New England Journal of Medicine detailing her operation and recovery. Complications have included kidney failure and two episodes of tissue rejection (one after one month and one after one year),[2] which have been suppressed by drugs.[citation needed] Dinoire will have to take the drugs for the rest of her life. A Boston doctor said if she stopped taking drugs, her scenario would be a "disaster", with the new face sloughing off over time.[15] Part of her pre-operative screening included psychological evaluations to ensure she would be capable of maintaining her treatment regimen and also could accept and withstand the effects of having a dead person's face grafted onto her own.[8]

See also[edit]

Images[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "World's fifth face transplant: Man gets new nose, mouth and chin after shooting accident." Daily Telegraph. 27 March 2009. [1]. Retrieved on 11 April 2009.
  2. ^ a b c "French hospital performs face, hand transplants." Associated Press. 11 April 2009. [2]. Retrieved on 11 April 2009.
  3. ^ a b "Newsmakers of the week: October 22." Macleans. 22 October 2007. [3]. Retrieved on 11 April 2009.
  4. ^ The Independent Face transplant recipient Isabelle Dinoire faces the world Published: 7 February 2006
  5. ^ a b c d The Sun Puppy for face swap mom , Friday, 28 September 2007
  6. ^ The Sun Make me pretty again , Friday, 28 September 2007
  7. ^ a b Schindehette, Susan. "Bold New Surgery Gives a Woman a New Face." People. 19 December 2005. [4]. Retrieved on 11 April 2009.
  8. ^ a b c Smith, Craig S. (14 December 2005). "As a Face Transplant Heals, Flurries of Questions Arise". The New York Times. 
  9. ^ "Woman has first face transplant". BBC News. 30 November 2005. Archived from the original on 2 December 2005. 
  10. ^ "French woman receives world's first face transplant: surgeon". Breitbart.com. 30 November 2005. Archived from the original on 2 December 2005. 
  11. ^ IHT article, 30 Nov. 2005
  12. ^ "7 face transplants have been done worldwide." Associated Press. 10 April 2009. [5]. Retrieved on 11 April 2009.
  13. ^ BBC article, 2006
  14. ^ Allen, Peter (2 November 2008). "Face transplant woman struggles with identity". The Daily Telegraph (London). Retrieved 5 May 2010. 
  15. ^ "'She's perfect,' doctor says of face transplant patient." Associated Press at CTV News. Wednesday 12 December 2007. Retrieved on 20 January 2009.

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