A woman who lost her nose to cancer eight years ago has managed to grow a new one – on her arm.
Carine, who lives in Toulouse in France, had some of her original nose removed in 2013 after she was diagnosed with sinus cancer.
Although the surgery got rid of the cancer, it left her too self-conscious to leave her home and took away her sense of smell.
Prior to her cancer treatment, doctors had created a custom-made nose using 3D-printed biomaterial and kept it on ice until technology caught up, The Daily Mail reports.
This year, however, they were able to implant it under the skin on her forearm where cells and blood vessels grew into the device over two months.
They then implanted the new nose onto her face and the blood vessels inside attached to those in her temples.
Mum Cecile, 50, said she was delighted with the results, especially with the fact she can now breathe better and smell her garden.
She can’t feel her nose yet, but a further operation should help with this.
Speaking to 20 Minutes, she said: “I can go out, I come back to life.
“It’s miraculous, this biomaterial was my last resort and I salute the research and the work of the doctors who helped me to hold on.
“I stayed shut inside my home for these past eight years. When you are sick, you isolate yourself and the face is what you see first.”
Before growing a new nose, doctors had tried giving Cecile skin grafts to replace lost tissue, but those died off.
She was also given prosthetics, but struggled to keep them in place.
It was then that surgeons Dr Agnes Dupret-Bories and Dr Benjamin Valerie asked if she’d be interested in re-growing the nose.
They chose to implant the nose device on the forearm as the skin is thinner there, similar to that on the face.
Celice had to visit the hospital on a regular basis while the skin was growing to make sure it was developing properly and there was no damage.
After two months the nose was sufficiently grown to be moved up to her face.
To replace the skin taken from her forearm they used a graft from her thighs.
She remained in hospital for 10 days and was given antibiotics, before returning home.
In May it was revealed that a British man had a new penis transplanted onto his genital region, after growing it on his forearm.