Richard Lee Norris Receives Face Transplant: 5 Other Face Transplant Recipients [PHOTOS]

  on March 27 2012 3:30 PM
  • Li Guoxing
    Li Guoxing received a new cheek, nose and upper lip in 2006 after being mauled by a black bear while defending his sheep. Though he was initially doing well, Guoxing died in 2008 after he stopped taking his immune-system repressing drugs and began using herbal remedies. Reuters
  • Isabelle Dinoire
    Isabella Dinoire was mauled by her dog in 2005 and received the first face transplant to restore her nose, lips, chin and cheek. While she will be on immune-system repressing drugs for the rest of her life, she has experienced minimal side effects and doctors consider her surgery a success. Reuters
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Before 2005, surgeries to improve facial disfigurement relied on skin grafts from patients or cadavers. Now face transplants are becoming more common that can include not only the skin, but jaw bones and teeth.

On March 19, Richard Lee Norris, 37, became the world's 23rd facial transplant recipient. A gun accident in 1997 left Norris lipless and noseless. After 36 hours of surgery, he received a face from the hair line to the neck plus upper and lower jaws. A week into his recovery, Norris started to shave and brush his teeth. 

Transplant recipients face the risk of immune rejection and must remain on immune-system suppressing drugs for the rest of their lives. The surgery is able to help people disfigured by accidents, diseases or attacks regain some of their old self, according to reports. Here are some before and after pictures of people who have received either full or partial face transplants.

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