Growing a Nose On Your Forehead. Or: You Should Really Go Get That Injury Checked Out
I think the pictures are probably weirder than the story. (I’m seriously awful at sensationalistic journalism, you guys.)
A 22-year-old man in Fuzhou, Fujian province, identified only as Xiaolian, has a nose growing on his forehead. It’s not, despite its appearance, a growth factor mis-expression. It’s actually a slight modification on traditional plastic surgery techniques that may open avenues for reconstruction for individuals who have had substantial facial trauma.
After a car accident in August 2012, Xiaolian refused the recommended nasal trauma treatment. (Which sounds EXACTLY LIKE SOMETHING THAT I WOULD DO. Cross your fingers that I don’t get into any car accidents.) Although his doctors urged him to get surgery following the accident, Xiolian opted for only basic care. Unfortunately, an infection corroded the cartelage of his original nose. As a result, it was so damaged that doctors were unable to repair it using conventional methods.
Instead, they developed an innovative alternative. They inserted a skin tissue expander to his foreheard. Next, they cut it into the shape of a nose and planted cartilage from his ribs to form the structure. Essentially, this is just what they would have done to his original nose if it was not so damaged. As it is, they simply moved the classic procedure to a new place. A transplant will restore a normal-looking appearance.
Shehan Hettiaratchy, Chief of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery a the Imperial College, said: “The forehead is a traditional place to get extra tissue from to rebuild a nose… The skin from there is a good match for nose skin. Most importantly, the forehead skin can be
moved to the nose and keep its blood supply, which is essential otherwise the skin would die.” Xiaolian will even retain his sense of smell.
According to his doctors, Xiaolian should be ready for surgery in the near future. In the meantime, I suspect he is generating a notable collection of hats.