Friendship is born at that moment when one person says to another: What! You too? I thought I was the only one.

-C.S. Lewis

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Chinese Face Race

We know that the Chinese want to be a force in the space race, but you may not have realized that they also want to factor in the face race.

Three Chinese doctors are vying to carry out the country's first face transplant.

Medics in France made history last month when they carried out the world's first partial face transplant on a woman who was injured by her dog.

It has now emerged a trio of doctors in China Li Qingfeng in Shanghai, Hong Zhijian from Jiangsu Province and Chen Huanran of Beijing are looking to take the procedure to the next level, the Beijing News daily reported yesterday.
It's face transplant mania!!!

However, the doctors also voiced concerns on issues surrounding the procedure. The first is the lack of national guidance defining who could be the recipients, Chen told China Daily in a telephone interview.

The operation could only be conducted on those who are clear of any criminal activities, and with serious disfiguring conditions, which traditional plastic surgery methods cannot repair, said Li.

Ethical concerns on the matching of the skin colour and texture between donor and recipient would also need to be addressed, said Chen.
So now it's an "ethical" issue to match the skin color. Hmmm. Speaking of ethics, I'm struck by the culture-crossing impulse to limit the recipients of face transplant to those who "really need it." How would this work? Would a potential recipient be placed in front of some review panel of former beauty pageant judges for an eligibility evaluation? "You're too cute for a face transplant" or "Good God, you're in! Get that man a face!" Perhaps an insurance adjuster would be assigned to deem whether the surgery would be considered elective or not.

This blog is based on a true story.