Solider gets new ear after doctors grow one on her own arm

Doctors harvested cartilage from a woman's body to grow a new ear in her forearm.      US Army

The surgery is being hailed one of the most complicated ever in U.S. history.

The skin was allowed to grow around this makeshift ear for a few months, allowing it to form new blood vessels and create some feeling in the air so that it would feel as close to a normal air when it was actually transplanted on her head.

The resulting ear "will have fresh arteries fresh veins and even a fresh nerve so she'll be able to feel it", Johnson said, the US Army reports.

In a post on the US Army blog, Burrage reveals that she originally didn't want the surgery and had initially planned on just going with a prosthetic ear for cosmetic purposes.

"The whole goal is by the time she's done with all this, it looks good, it's sensate, and in five years if somebody doesn't know her they won't notice", Lt. Col. Owen Johnson III, chief of plastic and reconstructive surgery, said in the statement. "After that I bear in mind individuals approaching us, asking if we were fine then I passed out".

Yet the now-21-year-old gets on the course to healing.

" As a young active-duty Soldier, they should have the most effective restoration they could obtain", he claimed.

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In 2016 Shamika Burrage was returning to Fort Bliss, Texas, after visiting family in MS when her tire blew out. The Military claimed Burrage recouped her hearing which the procedure was a success, inning accordance with a declaration on Monday. "I just remember the first flip and that was it". Her cousin, who was eight months pregnant at the time, had only minor injuries, while Burrage suffered the devastating head injuries as well as compression fractures to her spine and road rash.

Private Burrage, who underwent counseling to help her deal with the trauma and the accident's effects on her appearance, is now more optimistic even if she still has two surgeries left.

Although this was the first time this kind of ear reconstruction was attempted by an Army surgeon, the idea of growing ears is not new to science or medicine. However, the resounding success of Burrage's surgery means that United States army surgeons can now restore and recreate cartilaginous body parts for soldiers in service.

Burrage, now 21, was hesitant at first, but ultimately made a decision to go through with the procedure. The procedure, a first of its kind in the Army, involved harvesting cartilage from the soldier's ribs to carve out a replacement, which was then placed under the skin of the forearm to allow the ear to grow.

There are two more surgeries left to complete, though the team - and their patient - are reportedly confident that everything is going to plan.

"It's been a long process for everything, but I'm back", she said.

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