Press Release - Jun 10, 2011
BWH Surgeons Perform Transplant Surgery on Charla Nash
A Brigham and Women’s Hospital (BWH) plastic and orthopedic surgery team, led by Dr. Bohdan Pomahac, performed a full face transplant on Charla Nash, the Connecticut woman who was mauled by a chimpanzee in 2009. The procedure was performed late last month. It is the third full face transplant procedure performed this year at Brigham and Women’s. A double hand transplant was also performed, however the hands failed to thrive and were removed.
A news conference at Brigham and Women’s Hospital is scheduled for June 10
11 a.m. in Carrie Hall, 15 Francis Street, Boston
Please confirm attendance at 617-610-8525 or via pager at 617-732-6660
pager ID 12247.
The team of more than 30 physicians, nurses, anesthesiologists and residents worked for more than 20 hours to replace the full facial area of patient Charla Nash, including the nose, lips, facial skin, muscles of facial animation and the nerves that power them and provide sensation.
· The date of the procedure will not be released to ensure the privacy of the donor
· Charla Nash will not be available to media for interviews
The press conference will be webcast live.
Link will be live at 10:30 a.m.
Webcast Instructions and System Requirements:
Webcast Video with Power Point slides
Webcast video without Power Point Slides:
Video from the procedure, still photography shot during the procedure, animation and additional informational materials are available at 10:45 a.m.:
Order of speakers:
Dr. Elof Eriksson – chief, Division of Plastic Surgery, BWH
Dr. Bohdan Pomahac – plastic surgeon, director, BWH Burn Unit
Steve Nash, Brother of patient Charla Nash
Questions and Answers
Consent for the donation of the tissue graft from the face was obtained by New England Organ Bank staff after conversations with the donor family. Registering as an organ and tissue donor on a driver’s license is not accepted as consent for face donation; family consent is required.
Transplant History at BWH
Today, BWH is recognized as one of the world’s leaders in transplantation.
In 1954, a BWH team led by Dr. Joseph Murray performed the first successful human organ donor transplant, a kidney, from one brother to another. In recognition of this achievement, Dr. Murray received the Nobel Prize for Medicine in 1990.
The first heart transplant in New England was performed at BWH in 1984; this year, the 600th heart transplant was successfully performed at the hospital.
The first heart-lung transplant in Massachusetts was done at BWH in 1992
BWH also performed the first triple organ transplant and the first quintuple lung transplant in the United States in 1995 and 2004 respectively.
In 2006, BWH performed for the first time in its history 100 kidney transplants in one year and in 2008, more than 30 lung transplants were performed, putting BWH among the top hospitals in the country for volume.
Brigham and Women's Hospital (BWH) is a 793-bed nonprofit teaching affiliate of Harvard Medical School and a founding member of Partners HealthCare, an integrated health care delivery network. BWH is the home of the Carl J. and Ruth Shapiro Cardiovascular Center, the most advanced center of its kind. BWH is committed to excellence in patient care with expertise in virtually every specialty of medicine and surgery. The BWH medical preeminence dates back to 1832, and today that rich history in clinical care is coupled with its national leadership in quality improvement and patient safety initiatives and its dedication to educating and training the next generation of health care professionals. Through investigation and discovery conducted at its Biomedical Research Institute (BRI), BWH is an international leader in basic, clinical and translational research on human diseases, involving more than 900 physician-investigators and renowned biomedical scientists and faculty supported by more than $ 537 M in funding. BWH is also home to major landmark epidemiologic population studies, including the Nurses' and Physicians' Health Studies and the Women's Health Initiative. For more information about BWH, please visit www.brighamandwomens.org.