Isabelle Dinoire, 40, was pictured without makeup for the first time today showing the extent of her scars.
Ms Dinoire had her nose, cheeks, mouth, lips and chin replaced by donor tissue on November 27th, 2005, after they were torn off by her own dog six months earlier. The ground breaking operation made headlines around the world.
Her doctors, led by Jean-Michel Dubernard of Lyon University, said today that Dinoire has recovered slowly and steadily and overcome two episodes of rejection.
"At present, the patient says she is not afraid of walking in the street or meeting people at a party, and she is very satisfied with the aesthetic and functional results," the Dubernard team wrote in the New England Journal of Medicine.
Her rehabilitation programme included daily psychological counselling for the first month, and regularly after that, as well as a regimen of facial exercises.
At first, because her lips did not move properly, she could not always drink neatly, but that problem cleared up after a year. Sensation to heat and cold was normal at the six-month mark, and she could perceive light touch to her new skin.
Dinoire initially had trouble moving her lips properly to pronounce words that contained sounds such as P and B, but that problem also resolved itself over time.
Six months after the transplant, she could completely close her lips when she tried.
Photographs that accompany the report show her scars are still visible from the bridge of the nose extending outward to make a broad circle around the mouth, but makeup makes them far less apparent.
Güncelleme Tarihi: 15 Aralık 2007, 15:08
"The encouraging 18-month outcomes of face transplantation in our patient suggest that this procedure can offer hope for some patients with severe disfigurement," the doctors said.
Since Dinoire's surgery, two other people are known to have had face transplants.