Vt. lye victim gets new face at Boston hospital
BOSTON (WHDH) -- A Vermont woman whose face was disfigured in a lye attack received a face transplant at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston.
Doctors said 44-year-old Carmen Blandin Tarleton underwent the surgery earlier this month.
A team worked nearly 15 hours to transplant the facial skin, including the neck, nose, lips, facial muscles, arteries and nerves.
Doctors said Tarleton was the most optimistic and inspirational patient they’ve had. She was the fifth facial transplant at the hospital.
The 44-year-old Tarleton, of Thetford, Vt., was attacked by her former husband in 2007. He doused her with industrial strength lye. She suffered chemical burns over 80 percent of her body. The mother of two wrote a book about her experience that describes her recovery.
Doctors said it was their most extensive face transplant surgery to date. They said it was just as effective and successful as the past transplants.
“I think that she should be able to return home relatively soon,” said director of plastic surgery, Dr. Bohdan Pomahac.
Tarleton was not in attendance for Wednesday’s press conference.
The donor’s family wants to remain anonymous.
The Associated Press contributed to this story.