Women who underwent their first face transplant in 2008 in the United States after their husband blasted them with a shotgun in a failed suicide attempt died at the age of 57
- Connie Culp, 57, made international headlines in 2008 as the first recipient of a partial face transplant in the United States
- The doctors at the Cleveland Clinic, where she underwent the procedure, confirmed her death on Friday
- Culp was severely disfigured after being shot in the face by her husband at her Ohio home in September 2004
- The surgeons performed the 22 hour procedure over a two day period using 77 square inches of transplanted tissue
Ohio woman Connie Culp, the first person in the United States to receive a partial face transplant after a face shot, died at the age of 57.
The Cleveland Clinic, where Culp underwent historical surgery in 2008, confirmed her death in a statement on Friday.
& # 39; Connie was an incredibly brave, lively woman and an inspiration to many. Her strength was shown by the fact that she was the longest living face transplant patient to date, ”said Dr. Frank Papay, Chairman of the Institute for Dermatology and Plastic Surgery.
"She was a great pioneer and her decision to undergo a sometimes daunting process is a permanent gift to all of humanity."
Ohio woman Connie Culp (pictured before and after the operation) died Thursday, 12 years after being the first person in the US to receive a partial face transplant. She was 57 years old
Culp was severely disfigured after being shot in the face in a botched suicide attempt in 2004
Her cause of death has not been released.
Dr. Papay, who was part of the team of surgeons who performed the strenuous surgery on Culp 12 years ago, has been responsible for their care since then, reports WKYC.
Culp was severely disfigured in September 2004 after being shot in the face by her husband Tom Culp during a failed attempt to commit suicide.
The shot shot her eight feet away, detonating her nose, cheeks, palate, and eye.
Only her forehead, chin, parts of her eyelids and lower lip remained intact.
Tom Culp was convicted of attempted serious murder and sentenced to only seven years in prison for shooting.
Her husband Tom Culp (pictured with Connie) shot her from a distance of two meters, blasted off most of her face, leaving only her forehead, chin, part of her eyelids and lower lip
The doctors performed a strenuous 22-hour operation on 77 square inches of transplanted tissue within two days
Meanwhile, Connie underwent almost 30 corrective surgery before undergoing the transplant in December 2008.
The Cleveland Clinic surgical team integrated functional facial components and various tissue types to obtain 77 square inches of transplanted tissue.
The tissue types included skin, muscles, bone structures, arteries, veins and nerves.
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