14/02/2012 07:04 GMT | Updated 14/02/2012 10:03 GMT

Ugur Acar, Badly Burned Turkish Teenager, Has Country's First Face Transplant (VIDEO)

A 19-year-old Turkish teenager who suffered serious burns as a newborn has received the country’s first face transplant.

Uğur Acar underwent the surgery 24 days ago and was able to view his new face for the first time yesterday.

Speaking from his hospital bed at the Akdeniz University's School of Medicine in southern Turkey, Acar, who is already growing stubble on his chin, said his new face “couldn’t be better”.

Acar was burned in a house fire when he was just 40 days old, Today’s Zaiman reported.

Dr. Özlenen Özkan, a professor from the department of plastic, reconstructive and aesthetic surgery, said: “Uğur had his first shave. Uğur is both mentally and physically a very strong young man. His being strong makes our job easier.

“We are lucky to have such a patient. We are continuing to give him treatment to prevent tissue rejection. After a week, we will start cutting down on his medication. He can actually resume a normal life, but we would like to keep him here at the hospital for a little while longer,”

The surgery went ahead with transplant tissue taken from a 45-year-old donor.

Acar will be able to make facial expressions within six months and is now dreaming of getting married.

The surgery brings the worldwide number of face transplants to 20, the Daily Mail reported. The first took place in 2005 and was carried out on A French woman named Isabelle Dinoire.

Acar admires his new face