Who Is Eduardo D. Rodriguez? 10 Things To Know About Doctor Who Led Team In Most Extensive Face Transplant

Eduardo D Rodriguez
Eduardo D. Rodriguez, MD, DDS. YouTube/ NYU Langone Medical Center

Dr. Eduardo Rodriguez, a plastic surgeon at the Langone Medical Center in New York University, performed the operation that has been credited as the world's most extensive face transplant to date. According to the Washington Post, Rodriguez and a team of more than 100 doctors, nurses and technical assistants were able to give Patrick Hardison a new face from a 26- year-old organ donor, after the patient suffer from extreme burns in a 2001 fire.

So what else do we need to know about Dr. Eduardo Rodriguez?

1) Dr. Eduardo Rodriguez was born and raised in Miami, Florida and is the son of Cuban immigrants.

2) According to NewYork Magazine, Rodriguez " wanted to make money, raise a family, and be a professional,” So he set out to become a dentist.

3) In 1994, he was doing a residency in oral and maxillofacial surgery at Montefiore hospital in the Bronx and the director of the program, took him aside and told him he was impressed with his talent and his surgical skills. 

4) He studied surgery at Johns Hopkins and microsurgery in Taiwan.

5) Rodriguez finished his 16 years of training at age 37, an elite plastic surgeon with a specialty in reconstructive surgery.

6) The doctor treats patients who’ve had traumatic injuries resulting from boating or motor vehicle accidents as well as those with disfigurement due to cancer treatment, congenital birth defects such as cleft lip, and skeletal, jaw, or skull abnormalities.

7) He performed his first human transplant in 2012, at the University of Maryland, on a man whose face had been shot off.

8) He's also currently involved in basic science, translational and clinical research projects focused on composite facial allotransplantation and regenerative medicine.

9) Rodriguez warned Patrick Hardison that the surgery would be “the most extensive face transplant yet performed” and had only a 50 percent chance of success.

10) He and his surgeons spent hours practicing removing faces from cadavers; “we had to be able to do this thing in our sleep,” Rodriguez said.

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Juliana Barrera

Juliana Barrera started her mass communications career in the entertainment business at Estefan Enterprises, where she successfully participated in a variety of projects related to production, marketing and public relations for the company. She worked for three years as a writer and editor at La Vox Media group, the platform for an independent voice for Hispanic America. Additionally, she completed an internship at VIACOM  engaging audiences through pro-social initiatives. 

Juliana is a graduate student from Florida International University, her major is mass communications  and she has a minor in psychology. Her work has been published by HuffPost LatinoVoices, Latin Times, VOXXI, politic 365, La Opinión and others.