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Swolf

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: December 05, 2007, 09:53:08 AM

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/main.jhtml?xml=/news/2007/12/03/wface103.xml&CMP=ILC-mostviewedbox

Click the link to see the pictures....They can be GRAPHIC to some.

Fighting the curse of the face-eating tumour
By Matthew Moore
Last Updated: 1:11pm GMT 03/12/2007



A Jehovah's Witness who for decades refused all surgery on his horrific facial disfigurement has been given hope by a British doctor and new medical technology.

Telegraph TV: Jose Mestre - Man without a face
Telegraph TV: Faceless man visits London
Telegraph TV: Medical help for faceless man
Unwilling to accept a blood transfusion, Jose Mestre has allowed the bloody tumour that first appeared on his lip in adolescence to obliterate almost all of his face.

 
Jose Mestre aged 14, when his tumour was still small (left), and as he is now

Now 15 inches long and weighing 12 pounds, it has blinded him in one eye and made eating a daily ordeal. As it begins to block his airways, doctors fear his life could be in danger.

But now one of Britain's leading facial surgeons has proposed treating Jose, 51, by employing ultrasound waves to coagulate the blood before the operation.

This should allow his growths to be removed without risk of heavy bleeding – satisfying his religious prohibition on blood transfusions that has so far hampered his search for treatment.

Jose was examined by two doctors in Britain - Loshan Kangesu, consultant plastic surgeon at Broomfield Hospital, and Dr Iain Hutchison of St Bartholomew's in London.

Dr Hutchison, who also runs the Saving Faces surgery research charity, is optimistic that a single operation with a harmonic scalpel could have a dramatic affect on Jose's features.

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"I think we can remove a large proportion of the lesions – around 80 per cent," he said. "We would then have to deal with the underlying nose, lip and tongue disfigurement."

"I have never seen a vascular malformity as bad," he added.

Jose's condition, haemangioma, stems from abnormalities in the capillaries and veins in his face. In effect, what should be a river carrying blood back to his heart has turned into a lake, which has now expanded to obliterate the rest of his features.

For Jose, surgery would offer an escape from the routine he has developed to help deal with his affliction.

Every day he sets off from his home in a suburb of Lisbon for Rossio Square, one of the city's main plazas, where he sits out the afternoon enduring the stares and questions of strangers. He has become something of a local celebrity, a notoriety he does not always seem to resent.

 
Telegraph TV: Jose Mestre and his sister Guida in London

Unable to find work or a girlfriend, he has been supported by his siblings since the death of his mother, with whom he was very close and from whom he took his religious beliefs.

"It's very difficult to find out the truth about why he hasn't been treated in the past," said Rob Farquhar, producer of the Discovery Channel documentary which brought Jose to Britain in search of a cure.

Financial pressures, mis-diagnoses and the limitations of the Portuguese health system all played a role, but Jose's own complicated attitude to his condition has not helped.

Unsuccessful and unhappy visits to Germany and Spain in search of medical care in his youth have left him with a distrust of doctors. This, combined with his loyalty to his mother's faith, and concerns about life without the mask to which he has become accustomed, appear to have instilled Jose with a sullen fatalism about his condition.

His inertia has infuriated his close family, who do not share Jose's religious beliefs. Jose himself, although a Jehovah's Witness, does not attend any church.

During the consultation with Dr Hutchison in London, Jose's sister Guida reacted with exasperation her brother's initial reluctance to discuss the offer of a transfusion-free operation.

"Die alone, not with me. For me, finished," she cried, in dramatic footage to be broadcast for the first time this week. Guida shoulders much of the burden for caring for Jose.

 
Jose Mestre's siblings do not share his religious beliefs

But Jose now seems ready to confront his condition. He has agreed in principle to Dr Hutchison's proposal to return to London for an exploratory operation on one of his smaller lesions.

If the treatment works, the majority of Jose's tumour could be removed and his face rebuilt in a single 12 hour operation.

Despite the experimental nature of the treatment Dr Hutchison is confident of success.

A harmonic scalpel has never been used to remove growths as extreme as Jose's, but has proved itself a highly effective surgical tool since coming onto the market a few years ago.

Dr Hutchison, who has offered to carry out the operation without charge, is now waiting for Jose and his family to get in contact and arrange an appointment.

"I hope that he is well and in reasonable health, and if he wants to come and see me my door is open," he said.

"The Man with No Face", part of the "My Shocking Story" series, will be shown on the Discovery Channel at 9pm on Dec 6. For more details visit the programme's website.


Saving Faces is the only charity in the United Kingdom solely dedicated to the worldwide reduction of facial injuries and diseases. It funds education and research to improve the physical and psychological treatment of all victims of oral cancer and other facial diseases.
 



 

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External links
Saving Faces: The Facial Surgery Research Foundation




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CadillacPower24_2006

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#1 : December 05, 2007, 10:01:41 AM

looks like something out of a horror movie

Ericsbucs371

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#2 : December 05, 2007, 02:21:37 PM

Wow, I've never seen tumour that big, 15 inches long and weighing 12 pounds.

I like the sig Ruud Awakening


CadillacPower24_2006

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#3 : December 05, 2007, 02:24:27 PM

thanks!

OpTiOnMaStA

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#4 : December 05, 2007, 02:55:00 PM

It's really unfortunate that these things happen. I hope that he puts his religious beliefs aside so that he can live to think about religion and such things.

nybuccguy

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#5 : December 06, 2007, 06:49:56 PM



       haha, that must be what god wants.  I feel no pity for this fool.


BornaBuc47

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#6 : December 09, 2007, 11:44:02 AM

His family doesn't share his religious beliefs so how does a kid at 14 decide to not seek medical assistance for something like that? Someone should punch(hard) the person who got him involved in religion and the people in that religious organization. Funny bumper sticker I saw one time...

Jesus save me

from your followers

From 12 Pro Bowlers to 0-We got hosed alright


Runole

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#7 : December 10, 2007, 03:05:09 PM

That is an adorable picture Bornabuc!

Ericsbucs371

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#8 : December 11, 2007, 05:43:51 PM

That is an adorable picture Bornabuc!
I agree. Very funny. I'm sending that to a few people.

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