Chinese doctor grows human ear on man's arm after it was ripped off in car crash

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The Independent Online

A surgeon in China has grown a human ear on a man’s arm in a revolutionary advancement in cosmetic medicine. 

The patient, known only as Mr Ji, was seriously injured in a car accident last year, which resulted in his right ear being torn from his face.

The man had multiple operations to repair damage to his face, however, doctors were unable to restore his ear. 

After hearing about renowned plastic surgeon Guo Shuzhong, Mr Ji contacted him to ask for his help. 

Mr Guo, who conducted China's first face transplant operation in 2006, agreed to perform a three-step procedure on the patient. 

The Xi'an Jiaotong University doctor first stretched the patient’s skin on his arm with the use of a skin expander before taking cartilage from his ribs, which was cut into the shape of an ear, and placing it under the skin flap in his forearm.

He hopes to attach the organ to the right side of the man’s face in the coming months once the ear is fully grown. 

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Reporters take pictures of an "ear" growing on the arm of a patient who lost his right ear in an accident, at the first affiliated hospital of Xi'an Jiaotong University, in Xi'an, Shaanxi province, China, November 9, 2016 (REUTERS)

“I lost one ear. I have always felt that I am not complete,” the patient told China News. 

According to Mr Guo, the most challenging part of the three-step procedure was attaching the ear to the growing medium, the man’s arm. 

However, this step was deemed a success, with pictures showing the ear living on Mr Ji’s arm. 

According to local media, Mr Ji said he hoped the pioneering surgery would allow him to resume a normal life. 

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