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November 26, 2022
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Beyond the Mirror
Produced by: Kati Whitaker
A recent decision in the UK allowed the world’s first full facial transplants. The BBC's Kati Whitaker talks to three people about the impact of severe facial disfigurement and discovers what beliefs have helped them through their despair. The face is our first point of contact with the world. But what happens if you lose your face to injury or disease? Simon Weston suffered from burns in the Falklands war; Michele Simms had her face destroyed by a firework, and Diana Whybrew had half her face removed with a malignant tumor. Their belief in themselves has been challenged to its limits – down to a sense of who they are. This program was produced by the BBC World Service as part of our special Global Perspective series on belief.

Program Credits

Beyond the Mirror was produced by the BBC's Kati Whitaker as part of a special Global Perspective series on belief.


Changing Faces
A UK based charity that supports people living with facial disfigurement

Royal Free Hospital
As mentioned in the program, the Royal Free Hospital houses the team of doctors working on the full facial transplant.

Facial Prosthetics
This University of Utah site provides facial prostheticsinformation for patients and physicians

BBC: UK Gets Face Transplant Go-Ahead
This article offers an explanation of how the UK received approval for the procedure of a full-facial transplant.

Autobiography of a Face
by: Lucy Grealy 2003
A woman begins to accept herself and her appearance after losing part of her jaw to cancer thirty years earlier.

Future Face: The Human Face and How We See it
by: Sandra Kemp 2005
Kemp discusses what faces have meant throughout history as well as the future of facial surgery.

Don't You Know It's Rude to Stare
by: Laura Billson 2003
One family discusses how they cope with society's attitudes toward facial disfigurement.

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Programs by Kati Whitaker

Radio for between the ears
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