A Russian man has volunteered to become the world’s first head transplant patient. As reported by the Daily Mail, Valery Spiridonov, 30, suffers from Werdnig-Hoffman disease, a progressive muscle wasting genetic condition with no cure. Spiridonov contacted controversial Italian doctor Sergio Canavero after learning about Canavero’s controversial proposal, The head anastomosis venture Project or HEAVEN plan.
In 2013, Canavero published his proposal for head transplantation in The Surgical Neurology International Journal. In it, he stated his thoughts on candidates for the surgery.
I believe that the first patient should be someone, probably young, suffering from a condition leaving the brain and mind intact while devastating the body, for instance, but by no means exclusively, progressive muscular dystrophies or even several genetic and metabolic disorders of youth. These are a source of huge suffering, with no cure at hand.
Although there has been no meeting in person between patient and doctor, Spiridonov has high hopes that the surgery will take place as soon as 2016.
Canavero spoke at a 2014 TEDx event in Cypress, proposing his HEAVEN plan.