“The centers performing face transplants in Turkey are ahead of the centers in America and France”

prof. Dr. Ömer Özkan says that the centers performing face transplants in Turkey are ahead of the centers in America and France: Put patient photos side by side; see the difference.
Making a first in Turkey and transforming the face transplant surgery, which we thought to be a dream, into a four-hour routine surgery, Akdeniz University Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery Department Head Prof. Dr. Ömer Özkan performed a total of five face transplant surgeries. prof. Dr. Omer Ozkan; He answered the questions of Sabah newspaper about face transplant and whether he will go to a private hospital:

Why are face and organ transplants performed first in Antalya, not in Istanbul or Ankara? What is the secret of Antalya?
Antalya has become a brand in organ transplants and has been maintaining this position for years. If the management supports it, if you have motivation, if your skills, knowledge and experience are sufficient, if you have a vision; there is synergy. Akdeniz University is a university that has developed itself based on this philosophy. That's why Antalya is ahead in face and organ transplantation.

I HAVE NEW PROJECTS
Did you dream that you would do a face transplant?
My dream was actually an arm transplant, not a face transplant. But 'Is there an organ?' I was thinking. Seven or eight years ago, 'Can we have a face transplant?' I started to think.

You made a first in Turkey, are there any other things you say "What can I do first in the world, I should do"?
Of course there is. While the arm is transplanted, 'Is it possible or not?' We thought a lot. There were those who wanted to stop me by saying 'This will not work'. 'Can the arm be removed, will anything happen to the patient if it is removed?' we thought. After face transplant surgeries, people recognized and trusted us. This is a big advantage for us. We have new projects, but they don't have to be sensational. Things that will be beneficial to humanity will definitely be done when there are opportunities. But I can't say what they are.

Previously, an arm and leg transplant was performed together and the patient died. Did you say "I wouldn't do it"?
No. If possible; I would do the same surgery under better conditions, with good patient selection. This; it could happen to a face transplant patient or a kidney transplant patient. Medications given in the early period can cause such a complication.

After 10-20 years, will we be like a kidney-liver transplant in a face transplant?
We can be. Why would not! It turned out to be more rewarding than we ever expected in two years. While we were thinking, 'We cannot find a single donor', we performed seven transplants. I also talked to a few donor families, they never regret it.

Transplants in Turkey are very important. Is it right that they are so prominent?
There are three face transplant surgeries in America, one of which is a 'full face transplant'. But despite this, doctors and hospitals are advertising themselves. The first patient presentation in America was completely the show of the hospital, the doctor there. The people in France did not take the patient to the press, but the patient's psychology deteriorated nonetheless. This patient; It was not shown to the press, it was hidden. The benefits of showing it to the press or not will be seen in the future. But what is there to hide? In my opinion, what Hacettepe and Gazi University are doing in Turkey is also very good. When we look at these achievements, the best results are in Turkey… Micro surgery and aesthetic surgery are very advanced in Turkey. As a result, centers performing face transplants in Turkey; It is never behind the centers that perform these surgeries, neither in America nor in France. Put side by side pre- and postoperative photos of patients with face transplants; Which one will you see better?

I HAVE NOT MADE THE DECISION TO GO TO A PRIVATE HOSPITAL YET
Turkey ranks second in the world after France in face transplants. What will you do next?
I am a plastic surgeon; I also do a face transplant, I also do a face lift. These are done under university conditions. There is no gain for me. Then why should I bother for a facelift? In summary; After having a certain experience, working full time for plastic surgery does not make much sense. Either you have to drop out of university or you will leave aesthetics and continue with completely reconstructive.

It is said that you will leave the university and continue your career in a private hospital. Is it correct?
I haven't made my final decision yet. After all, I've been working in a private hospital for three years after 17.00:17.00. It's very tiring, but we're okay with that. Even after 17.00 we are doing our job. We can continue our academic work before XNUMX. We are not unhappy, we do not have a problem. There is a law and we have to abide by it. We are also doing our part.

AESTHETIC SURGERIES CREATING WORKS
If you were older and had no financial problems, wouldn't you prefer to just stay at the university and teach?
Thank god I don't need the money. Money is not everything, but you earn money from the work you do. A lot of people win when they don't. I have no such request. I want to be able to do my job and experience spiritual pleasure. Of course, I have to earn something in return. Why shouldn't I just give lectures and do my surgery when I've improved myself so much? There is nothing to do in plastic surgery without getting something in return. After all, you are creating a work. I will do rhinoplasty, but I will not get paid for it; Such a concept does not exist in the world.

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Source : Didem SEYMEN (Sabah Newspaper)

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