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First U.S. Face Transplant Patient Leaves Hospital

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The woman who received the first face transplant in the United States has left the Cleveland hospital where she has been since her 22-hour surgery in early December, the Associated Press reported Friday.

Officials at the Cleveland Clinic said the woman left Thursday night, but would not say where she went. The patient, whose identity has not been revealed, and her family have declined requests for comment, the wire service reported.

According to the woman's surgeon, she is able to eat solid foods and breathe on her own for the first time since her disfiguring injury several years ago that left her with no nose, palate, or way to eat or breathe normally, the AP said.

This was the fourth partial face transplant in the world, although the others weren't as extensive, the news service said.

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