Behold the thinking man's nose job.

Using skin and cartilage from a patient's ribs, Chinese doctors are growing a replacement nose on the forehead of a 22-year-old man injured in a car accident last year, according to a Reutersreportpicked up by news organizations.

The technique, reportedly a first, updates a common practice in reconstructive plastic surgery, doctors say.

The patient, nicknamedXiaolian, received only basic treatment after the August 2012 wreck and could not afford surgery. His nose has become so badly infected that it cannot be saved.

Doctors in Fuzhou City, in Fujian province, decided to try the novel approach to growing a nose, which has taken about nine months.

LiveScienceexplainsthe procedure:

The man's doctors placed tissue expanders, which create space to stretch the skin, under the man's forehead, and created the rough shape of a nose, probably using screws and plates. They then harvested cartilage from his ribs to fill in the nose. Once the nose is ready, they will rotate the entire assemblage - skin, blood vessels, cartilage and all - and move the new nose to where his current nose sits.

The lead plastic surgeon, Guo Zhihui, from Xiehe Hospital, said that the transplant would happen soon and that Xiaolian could lead a normal life afterward.

David Cangello, a plastic surgeon at Lenox Hill Hospital and Manhattan, Eye Ear and Throat Hospital in New York, toldLiveSciencethat the procedure is "a different take on a principle that we commonly use in reconstruction." He was not involved in the surgery.

Last year, a British man who lost his nose to cancer had a replacement grown on one of his arms. His doctors said his appearance and sense of smell should be as they were before the transplant.

You may also like...

Bra Shaking: Police investigated for making woman shake her bra

4 H8TERZ:Florida's rejected license plates

Shroomin: Man caught getting high on mushrooms with live gator in backpack

Hot robber:Pretty female robber wrestles giant clerk, wins

Mistaken Identity: Strip club fight leads to interstate shooting

Animal Cruelty:Man accused of killing, cooking family dog

Hooters Hotties: Beautiful women compete in 2013 Hooters swimsuit competition

My bad, Judge:Woman apologizes after flipping off judge

Teen Lesbian Support:Online support grows 18-year-old girl who had same-sex relationship with 15-year-old

Prostitute Roundup:92 arrested in online sex sting

Yellow light bust:Florida shortens yellow lights to cause more red light tickets

Hottie Internet Convict: Woman behind mug shot meme sets the record straight

Homebrew Soda:Man claims to find Coca-Cola recipe, sells it on eBay

Waterspouts:Video, images show waterspouts coming ashore

Motorcycles and bikinis:Bikini bike wash!

Faces of Meth: Before and After pictures

Sex tape scandal:Miss Delaware Teen USA resigns

When neigh means neigh:Video shows man brutalizing, having sex with horse

Sex blog:Tampa area school CFO busted over her dirty sex porn blog *warning, GRAPHIC*

Nasty Nasty Dining:10 of the nastiest restaurants in Tampa Bay in 2012

APP-tastic:Download the 10 News app for your iPad

Bikinis, mud, trucks:The Redneck Yacht Club

Outrageous mug shot galleries...

Strange:Some of the most unusual mug shots we've seen

Notorious Women:Bad girls behind bars

Teachers: Teacher arrest mugshots

Prostitutes:Prostitute mug shots

Porn arrests:Child porn arrest mug shots

Local Mugs:Hillsborough County Mug shots

More unusual mug shots and galleries:10 News slideshows and galleries

Read or Share this story: