Fort Worth Full Face Transplant Patient Makes 1st Appearance

BOSTON (AP) – The nation’s first full face transplant recipient said the first thing his young daughter told him when she saw him after the operation was “Daddy, you’re so handsome.”

Dallas Wiens, sporting a goatee and dark sunglasses, joined surgeons Monday at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston in his first public appearance since the 15-hour procedure in March.

“It feels natural,” said the 25-year-old Fort Worth man, who received a new nose, lips, skin, muscle and nerves from an anonymous donor. The operation was paid for by the U.S. military, which hopes to use findings from the procedure to help soldiers with severe facial wounds.

Wiens’ features were all but burned away and he was left blind after hitting a power line while painting a church in November 2008.

Surgeons said the transplant was not able to restore his sight, and some nerves were so badly damaged from his injury that he will probably have only partial sensation on his left cheek and the left side of his forehead.

In an Associated Press story and a YouTube video last fall, Wiens spoke poignantly about why he wanted a transplant and how he wanted to smile again and feel kisses from his daughter, Scarlette, who turns four next month. Face transplants give horribly disfigured people hope of an option other than “looking in the mirror and hating what they see,” he said.

He told the AP that his daughter and his faith have kept him motivated.

The surgery was paid for by the Department of Defense, which gave the hospital a $3.4 million research grant for five transplants.

About a dozen face transplants have been done worldwide, in the U.S., France, Spain and China.

(© Copyright 2011 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

  • CB

    Wow. I wasn’t expecting it to be that good. The power of the human mind and what we can accomplish is truly limitless.

  • Fort Worth Full Face Transplant Patient Makes 1st Appearance « Fort Worth News Feeds

    […] Fort Worth Full Face Transplant Patient Makes 1st Appearance The nation’s first full face transplant recipient, a 25-year-old Fort Worth man, has made his first public appearance since his operation. Go to News Source […]

  • KT

    This is so fantastic! Congratulations Dallas!! You look amazing.

  • Ana

    Congratulations to Dallas! His daughter is right. He is very handsome, and a true inspiration to many.

  • william

    i was going to rip this article – then i thought of my 5 year old daughter – and how i would do anything to see or feel her kisses – may whomever or whatever bless this man and the donor – NOW THATS RECYCLING!

  • NAK


  • Terri

    Dallas….you look awesome! Congratulations! I hope you have continued improvement and I can see how much your daughter loves you and how much you love her.

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