True stories of life, death and transformation from my career as a facial surgeon
Powerful human stories from Jim McCaul's extraordinary work as a facial surgeon, and a fascinating journey through the history of reconstruction techniques pioneered during WWI.
'Face to Face is not just a brilliant introduction to one of the most exacting areas of modern medicine, it's a humbling glimpse of humans at their best.' Sunday Times
So much of our identity and sense of self is vested in the face we see in the bathroom mirror every morning. Now imagine that face so ravaged by cancer, an accident, a gun shot wound or a car crash that it is barely recognizable. Think how it might feel if, after surgery, the person you remember, but had given up all hope of seeing again, is looking back at you from the mirror once more.
Over the years, maxillofacial surgeon Jim McCaul has helped countless people make this journey. His extraordinary book follows the stories of some of the patients he has saved from terrible illness and life-changing injuries – and some he wasn’t able to help. We follow the epic and complex surgical procedures his job requires him to perform daily, where the margin for error is to all intents and purposes zero.
Face to Face is a journey through the most high-tech and complex of microsurgical procedures as well as the facial reconstruction techniques pioneered during the First World War. But at its heart are the human stories of the patients for whom treatment is often quite literally a matter of life and death.
'Fascinating and life-affirming ... Jim McCaul confides in us the joys and the agony of facial surgery.' Dr Richard Shepherd, bestselling author of Unnatural Causes
“Face to Face is not just a brilliant introduction to one of the most exacting areas of modern medicine, it's a humbling glimpse of humans at their best.”
“The face is our window on the world. In his powerful and moving account McCaul describes how it feels to take it apart and put it back together again, in the battlefield and on the operating table. This is often scary stuff, but always inspiring.”
Professor Stephen Westaby, bestselling author of Fragile Lives
“There's a vicarious thrill to being let into this insider zone... Inspires wonder at all that modern medicine can achieve.”
“Enjoyable and compelling.”
Mail on Sunday
“A trailblazer in his field ... Face to Face is a love letter to both the fragility and stoic robustness of the human body.”
“The pages sear the mind's eye with stories of tragedy, loss, hope, life and death.”
“A wonderful book for everyone who has a zest for the healing power of curiosity.”
Professor Gordon Turnbull, Consultant Psychiatrist and author of Trauma
“Fascinating and life-affirming ... Jim McCaul confides in us the joys and the agony of facial surgery.”
Dr Richard Shepherd, Consultant Forensic Pathologist