Man has a new face – level 3

23-11-2015 15:00

A volunteer firefighter from Mississippi who suffered extensive facial burns now has a new face. Patrick Hardison underwent the facial transplant in August, which also restored his eyelids, eyebrows, ears and hair.

Surgeons spent 26 hours completing the operation, working in two teams – one preparing the donor and the other the recipient.

“The fact that we were able to perform this and the patient was able to come out of the operating room safely is a very important historic event.”

Mr Hardison was injured in a house fire as he attempted to rescue a woman he believed was trapped in the blaze. He suffered third degree burns of his entire face and scalp.

“The amount of tissue that was transplanted in Patrick’s face had not been transplanted before. We feel as a team, as a group, that it’s absolutely essential to remove all pf the scars and get down to healthy tissue in order for a patient to be normal, and being normal is defined by normal function and normal appearance.”

Surgeons slit the skin at the back of the donor’s head, peeling each side forward with key pieces of bone attached at the chin, nose and cheekbone and then precisely draped it onto Hardison’s head.

“This is not an operation that is for everyone – it’s for very courageous individuals. But now we have proven that technology, the ability to transplant the face has advanced.”

Hardison can now blink and even sleep with his eyes closed.

He had waited more than a year on a donor register for a perfect match – not only blood type but someone with fair skin and light hair. The donor was a 26-year-old, David Rodebaugh, who died in a cycling accident.

For the rest of his life, the father of five will have to take immunosuppressant drugs so his body does not reject his new face.

Difficult words: extensive (covering a large area), donor (“giver”), attempt (to try), trapped (not able to escape), blaze (a fire), scalp (the skin covering the top of the head), tissue (the material that people, animals and plants are made of), essential (important), slit (to cut), drape (to put over), immunosuppressant (keeping the immune system from fighting the body).



If you read and listen to two articles every day, your reading and listening skills can improve fast. You can learn quickly and after some time you will not have to translate into your own language. You will simply understand. Why should you do this?

When you listen to people in your native language, you do not translate. You simply understand. The same has to be in English. When you learn English, you have to learn the whole sentences in context.

Students, who translate English texts, do exercises and do tests are very good at translating, doing exercises and doing tests, but they have problems with understanding English in real life. In real life, nobody waits for your translation. People usually use simple English when they speak but they use it fast. You have to understand with no translation to your native language. If you translate, you cannot be part of communication because you are thinking about the language too much. These words are maybe hard to read but they are true.

You also have to hear every new word 5 to 10 times if you want to remember it. That’s why we use the same words in one level. If you read and hear the same words again and again, you will understand them and remember them. If you know words from one level, you can go to a higher level and learn new words. It is important to go step by step, and read and listen to words which are used in English often. This is what we do with our news. In our short news, we use words which are used in English often. Level 1 has the 1000 most important words. Level 2 has the 2000 most important words, Level 3 has the 3000 most important words.

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