Extensive Face Transplant Provides Previous Firefighter New Outlook On Life


Pat Hardison left for a call as a volunteer firefighters that would change his life. Fourteen years later on, another call would do the precise very same thing: a call to get a face transplant.

Pat Hardison had been a volunteer firefighter for seven years prior to his accident.[Photo courtesy of the Hardison family]

Pat Hardison had actually been a volunteer firefighters for 7 years prior to his mishap. [Image thanks to the Hardison household]
“I didn’t do it making a living, I did it due to the fact that I enjoyed it … … at this department it’s numerous. It’s not such as a fire department that volunteers, we’re a brotherhood.”.
In 2001, Hardison was a 27-year-old partner, papa, tire salesperson, and volunteer firemen. He and his partner Chrissi were raising their 3 kids in a little Mississippi town. Hardison “had everything going,” approximately he thought.
Hardison, who was the captain of the local volunteer fire department, got to a burning home, and got in to do precisely what he suched as, not providing it a doubt. He does not bear in mind much besides for the ceiling breaking down around him, and his mask melting to his face. He pulled it off, closed his eyes, and held his breath as he in some method made his escape of the burning structure.
Other members of the department rushed to conserve Hardison’s life, and some were unforeseeable whom they were handling, due to the fact that Hardison was so badly burned.


Hardison, in baseball cap, before face transplant[Photo courtesy of the Hardison family]
Hardison, in baseball cap, prior to face transplant [Photo thanks to the Hardison household]
By closing his eyes and holding his breath, Hardison was apparently able to prevent smoke inhalation, and from losing his vision. Over the next 63 days, Hardison recuperated from burns that took his scalp, ears, eyelids, nose and lips; taking not just his face, however a lot more.
They’re young youngsters,” Hardison stated. “And you got to understand … we constantly did things every day, and all of the stuff that altered simply overnight.”.
Hardison’s medical treatments worked out over 70 in number, and a great deal of were reconstructive. He had really implants put for prosthetic ears, in addition to skin grafts to try to rebuild his eyelids, nose, and mouth.
The surgical treatments could not supply Hardison back the life he lost, which sent him into a deep stress and anxiety. Dependented on discomfort medication, he separated himself and ultimately, he and Chrissi separated. After being notified that, due to not having eyelids, he would quickly go blind, Hardison started examining face transplants.
His pursuit sent him to Dr. Eduardo Rodriguez, who is a reconstructive expert. Rodriguez had in fact just recently altered the face, jaw and tongue of a man who had really been hurt in a weapon mishap. The surgical treatment, which took place in 2012, was the most detailed transplant to this day, and Rodriguez was open to a brand-new customer.
Hardison went through a battery of screening and examinations, and they began the look for a donor. The donor needed to match a number of credentials: they had to have the very same blood type as Hardison, the very same skin color and hair color, along with an equivalent skeletal structure. In 2014, Hardison was placed on the transplant list.
Helen Irving, the CEO and president of LiveOnNY, assisted Rodriguez discover a donor for Hardison, however it had not been a simple job.
“This is perhaps the most tough search that we have in fact ever done,” Irving mentioned. “For sure it would have been streamlined if more individuals signed up on the computer system pc registry and more people stated yes to contribution, however in this particular circumstances we are looking for exactly what I call a particular needle in a certain haystack.”.
In July of this year, Hardison lastly got his match. The donor was BMX rider, Dave Rodebaugh, who, sadly, was riding in Brooklyn without a helmet, and struck his head in a crash. He was stated brain-dead at 26-years-old.


Donor Dave Rodebaugh was a BMX rider from Columbus, Ohio.[Photo courtesy of Greg Mionske/Red Bull Content Pool]

Donor Dave Rodebaugh was a BMX rider from Columbus, Ohio. [Image thanks to Greg Mionske/Red Bull Material Pool]
On August 14, after a minute of silence to acknowledge Rodebaugh, Hardison’s transplant group got to work. The surgical treatment was 26 hours long, and after that Hardison had to work out rejection. After making it through that stage, Hardison had to re-learn the very best methods to consume and speak.
It’s been 3 months considered that the medical treatment, and Hardison is gradually alleviating back into things he thought he had really lost completely. His beard is growing, and he had the ability to going to Macy’s.
“I went to Macy’s to obtain clothing and I was simply another individual, nobody is gazing or pointing. I had not been terrifying any children,” he mentioned. “It’s merely—- it’s incredibly psychological, to have that.”.
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