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Plastic surgeons from Canada and the United States perform 30 reconstructive surgeries for wounded Ukrainians

25 October 2023

For the second time, a mission of Canadian and American reconstructive surgeons, Face the Future Ukraine, took place in Ivano-Frankivsk. The world’s experts, together with their Ukrainian colleagues, performed more than 30 plastic surgeries on people who suffered war injuries. The patients include military personnel from different parts of Ukraine. All of them have severe mine-blast wounds to their faces and necks: damage to the orbit of the eye, severe nose injuries, and missing jaw fragments.

This is the 53rd mission conducted by the Face the Future team in different parts of the world. However, Ukraine has the most severe combined cases in the entire experience of the organization. A team of 15 international specialists came to Ukraine to perform unique surgeries: reconstructive surgeons, oculoplastists, plastic surgeons, otorhinolaryngologists, oncologists, anesthesiologists, and nurses. Ukrainian specialists from Ivano-Frankivsk, Kyiv, and Zaporizhzhia worked and trained with them.

“We carefully prepared for this mission together with foreign surgeons - for 5 months we had hours of online consultations to select patients and develop surgery plans. For many patients, bioengineers prepared individual plates that were printed on a 3-D printer to restore the integrity of the bones, fragments of which were destroyed during the injury. This was a major breakthrough in the field of endoscopic surgery, says Natalia Komashko, project manager from the Ukrainian side, and head of the Ukrainian Association of Endoscopic Head and Neck Surgery.

In total, the team of specialists restored physical health and aesthetic beauty to more than 60 Ukrainians during the two missions. All reconstructive surgeries were free of charge for the patients. As part of the international mission, international symposia for surgeons and nurses were held in Ivano-Frankivsk for the second time. Leading experts from Canada, the United States and Ukraine shared their experience in performing complex reconstructive interventions and the specifics of managing patients with war injuries. The symposia were attended by more than 200 surgeons and nearly 300 nurses.

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The humanitarian program was created in cooperation with the Face The Future Foundation, Razom for Ukraine, and Still Strong in partnership with the CF “Patients of Ukraine”, the project “Rehabilitation of War Trauma”, the Ukrainian Association of Endoscopic Head and Neck Surgery, the Regional Clinical Hospital of the Ivano-Frankivsk Regional Council, with the support of the Embassy of Switzerland in Ukraine, Ivano-Frankivsk Regional State Administration, and others.