Doctors have been transplanting livers, kidneys, and hearts for over forty years - but faces have always been different. They are seen as a sacred and untouchable part of our identity. Unlike other organs, face transplants are not life saving operations. As a result, ethical committees have always blocked them from going ahead.
In November 2005, 37 year old, mother of two, Isabelle Dinoire became the first person in the world to receive a new face. The decision made by French surgeons to perform the operation went against the findings of almost every other ethical committee in the world and has since sparked a fierce debate over the ethics of the operation.
With the long term effects still unknown, do the risks outweigh the benefits? Are face transplants really in the best interest of the patient?
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