Lifestyle & Belief

Growing noses on foreheads and 5 other wacky ways doctors make body parts


Doctors have grown a new nose on a patient's own forehead after he suffered severe facial injuries in a car accident.

What is more remarkable than the doctors in China who were able to successfully grow a nose on a man's forehead?

(YouTube Screengrab)


Perhaps the fact that it isn't the first time body parts have been grown independently in such a manner. 

Here are some other ways body parts have been sprouted, printed and just generally cultivated in unorthodox ways.

1) Woman grows a new ear on her arm

Sherrie Walters, 42, got skin cancer and had to have her ear and part of her skull removed. Doctors were able to grow a new ear on her arm using cartilage from her rib. 

(Johns Hopkins University/Courtesy)


2) Fingertip on stomach

Orange News reports that after sawing off the tip of his finger, 20-year-old furniture worker Wang Yongjun was rushed to a hospital in the Liaong province of China.

Dr. Huang Xuesong explains what happened next:

"We had to make a quick decision or he could have lost his finger. We decided to cultivate a new fingertip on his stomach."

(Via Orange News) 

3) Meet Vacanti mouse

The Vacanti mouse was a lab mouse that had what looked like a human ear grown on its back.

Wikipedia photo.

According to a medical study, the "ear" was actually an ear-shaped cartilage structure grown by seeding cow cartilage cells into a biodegradable ear-shaped mold and then implanting it under the skin of the mouse.

4) Liver in a petri dish

A group in Yokohama reported it has grown a primitive liver in a petri dish using a person's skin cells.

The rudimentary liver is the first complex, functioning organ to be grown in the lab from human, skin-derived stem cells. When scientists transplanted the organ into a mouse, it worked a lot like a regular human liver, according to NPR.

Illustrtaion of liver Gray's Anatomy via Wikimedia Commons.

5) 3-D-printed lower jaw

Back in 2012, LayerWise in Belgium used 3-D printing to make a replacement lower jaw out of titanium for an 83-year-old Dutch woman.

(Yorick Jansen/AFP/Getty Images)

Since then, 3-D printing has been used to make prosthetics both internal and external. University of Michigan researchers in February used a 3-D printed airway to hold an ailing baby’s bronchus open.

And when cancer patient Eric Moger lost a large chunk of his face to tumor removal, doctors in Britain replaced the missing part with a 3-D printed prosthesis.