First Successful Full Face Transplant With Tear Ducts

In November 2005, Isabelle Dinoire,38, became the first person ever to receive a partial (lips, nose, chin) face transplant in Amiens, northern France. In December 2008, Connie Culp, 45, received a face transplant for the first time in the United States at the Cleveland Clinic.

"American doctors are perfectly able to perform these type of operations," Lantieri said, adding that a team of American doctors from New York, Baltimore and Rochester came to France last week to learn the surgical technique from Lantieri and his team. "Something needs to be done for the 200 to 400 badly burned GIs who are waiting in U.S. military hospitals to be treated with such procedure," he added.

Other medical teams, including an American and a British, have received official authorizations to carry out full face transplants.

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