A team led by Dr. Guo Shuzhong, a reconstructive surgery specialist, completed the second phase of a three-part reconstruction plan, China Daily reported.
In the first phase, doctors buried a skin expander under the skin of the patient, only identified as Ji. They then injected water into the area to expand the skin.
This week, the First Affiliated Hospital of Xi’an Jiaotong University team took part of Ji’s rib cartilage and buried it under the expanded skin.
Now, doctors will wait for the ear to grow completely to perfectly fit Ji’s head.
“The third phase of the operation, to transplant the new ear onto Ji’s head, will be carried out in three or four months,” Guo’s colleague, Shu Maoguo, told China Daily.
Ji told China Daily the ear growing on his right arm “looks exactly as the same as my old ear.”
A similar development occurred in 2015 when man who lost his nose to cancer had a ground-breaking treatment which saw doctors grew a new one on his forehead.
Paul Singleton, 45, was left with just one nostril on a snub nose after reconstruction surgery failed.
He found a prosthetic nose he was given too embarrassing to use, and it fell off when he sneezed.
Consultants at the Northwick Park Hospital in Harrow, Middlesex, UK, told him of an amazing new procedure which had been tried only once before in the world.
A self-inflating device was inserted beneath his hairline to stretch the skin.
The device was cut from his forehead, stretched over a metal and cartilage frame, and then stitched to his face.