Huang Chuncai Update: Surgery Successful

I have added this revision as an update to this post. The comment by “K Alton” is correct. The first photo is of a man called Geng Libo. The second is Ou Gulfeng. Neither are Huang Chuncai. But, though the comment left by “racliu”, I’ve been able to uncover more information, and photos, about Huang Chuncai. Visit the updated post.

Apparently most sites on the Internet are content with reporting and showing Huang Chuncai’s horrific photos, but stop short of showing his progress. Ever since I discovered this story in Fortean Magazine, I hunted the Internet for my original post, April 20. (Read the original post for Huang Chuncai’s full story.) By that time, Mr. Chuncai had already undergone the second surgery (January 7, 2008 ) to remove the tumors that have grown around his face. Even at that time, I could find no reports of photos of his recovery. You would think people would be interested to see this man’s life improve. Apparently not.

After much scouring, I found two photos showing his recovery. Both were on site were I couldn’t even hazard a guess to the language. Maybe Scandinavian. Maybe Polish. Since I used Google’s image search, I couldn’t translate the page to see how Mr. Chuncai had recovered.

Here you see Huang Chuncai on the operating table before his second, January 7, operation. The operation took place in Guangzhou, and removed almost 10 lbs from his face.

These two photos show how Huang Chuncai has recovered. The first I can only guess if this is Huang Chuncai. I think it is. The second was pulled from a site that had older pictures of the man, so I’m confident this is him.

Chris Kalidor

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36 Responses to “Huang Chuncai Update: Surgery Successful”

  1. I too have been eagerly looking for photos of his recovery and haven’t found any. If that’s him above, he seems better. I hope he recovers well. Thank you for your efforts looking for current pictures.

    Mabel

    • This isn’t Huang. His sight was on his right eye not the left. I am still looking but these pictures are not of him. Pay special attention to facial features and you will know what there is a picture that is actually him.

  2. I too am frustrated with the absence of follow up information, I’m glad you found some and posted it here. By the way, it is listed as one of the top Google searches so take heart.

  3. It took me forever to find recover photos and I was so glad to find your site. I’m so glad his operation went well – I hope he can live a semi-normal life in the next few years.

  4. ccbc2000 Says:

    Hi, if you live in the uk, there is a TV show about Huang Chuncai this evening on Channel 4

  5. Hi
    I just watch the documentary about this dignified man. How lucky we are.
    I was looking for an update on how he is today but some of the material out there is in bad taste and as you say doesn’t seem too interested in how Huang Chuncai is doing today.

    Thanks so much for your update.

  6. The first picture is a guy called Geng Libo, see here:

    http://www.freakycreek.com/2007/08/terribly-deformed-geng-libo-from-china/

    The second is a guy called Ou Guifeng, see here:

    http://www.chinadaily.com.cn/photo/2006-06/29/content_629422.htm

    So I don’t think either are Huang Chuncai.
    K

  7. I can’t find much except that the hospital that is doing the treatments asks for donations towards a third operation for sometime later this year (2008). I wonder if some people expected to see much more progress though I think the fact that he is now recognizable as human and probably so much more comfortable is a huge improvement.

  8. I have also been very curious about his recovery. My feeling is that the first photo is not him, though I wouldn’t be surprised if I was wrong. The fact that he has hair is one sign that it is probably not him. I think that the second photo is him, however, and I am happy to see such a dramatic improvement. I hope he leads a long happy life. His challenges make one put their own problems into perspective.

  9. I really want to know how he is doing, i watched the channel four documentary about the elephant man and was really touched. If anyone as any information on his recovery or his further operations then i would be greatful if they could let me know

  10. If you watched the recent documentary carefully about Huang Chuncai they told you that he lost his left eye due to the tumour. In both of these photos the men still have their left eye. So sorry I don’t think either of the photos is Huang. It is very frustrating as I too felt compelled to follow this brave man and his family’s story.

  11. [...] UPDATE: How is Huang Chuncai doing now? [...]

  12. I would love to think these pictures are of Huang Chuncai. But I agree, only the 2nd picture is halfway believable. Although, one article had said that Huang’s teeth were knocked out (from the weight) and it looks like this man has teeth…?

  13. Neither of these pictures is Huang Chuncai. One of these men has a normal left eye, which the documentary shows has been completely destroyed by his tumor. And if you watch the documentary, you can see that his right eye was never covered by the tumour and remained normal, while both of these men have damaged right eyes.
    I wish Huang all the best, and hope that furthur operations allow him to live a long, and much happier life.

  14. Thank you, I just spent an hour trying to find updates. People are sick, they want to be able to see someone suffer so they can feel better about their own lives, when that person’s life starts to get better they move on to the next train wreck. We all want to blame the media for this but the media unfortunately reports only on what we want to see.

  15. I admire huang’s courage !!

  16. Those photos are not of Huang, theyre of another man with the same condition. Just thought I would let you know.

  17. China monitors much of what is reported in its media. If the out-come wasn’t good maybe they aren’t keen to publish any bad news. I was troubled to watch the tv documentary and operation. He was sent home with weeping wounds and in lots of pain.
    We watch it as entertainment but it seems once the show is over he is forgotten… Maybe his family could be helped with some of the money television station made from the show…
    Anyway I hope I am wrong and that he is doing well!

  18. The first picture you show (post second surgery) can’t be Huang. This man has a natural mouth, where Huang’s had to be reshaped during his surgeries and also, his tumors appear to be in a different place. The second photo looks authentic, and there is even a hint of the deformity on his back, which would correlate with Huang’s. I would love to know more about his recovery also, but have been unable to find anything more recent than your post. I only found out about Huang last night in a documentary which was shot before, during and immediately after his first op, ending before the second op. You would think that his recovery would be an even more interesting and human story, but I think TV Execs think we all just want to see the freak in him, not the man.

  19. whoa those surgeons had to be pros 2 fix him up like d=that

  20. Thank you for taking the initiative to learn more about Huang and sharing with us.

  21. when i saw these pictures it made me smile to know that Huang made it through the first surgery….i would love to no more about what has happened to him and how his recovery has been…when i watch him on the history channel it was very interesting…it made me cry…he was always positive about it and that is very cool…you may never get as far as Huang if your negative…he made and i hope that he lives his long life he wants…and gets as far as he wants in life….who ever rejects him are really stupid to judge him from the outside when all you should care about is the inside…to me personality is all that matters

  22. desiree Says:

    it is sad to see no recovery photos as people seem to not be as interested as he progresses. Neither of these pictures are Huang. I appreciate the effort but giving false information and photos is wrong.

  23. Jennifer Enoki Says:

    Thanks for posting this! Its sad that people only want to view his deformities and don’t care about his progress.

  24. djhdhgj Says:

    http://ow.ly/cYpt

    this is the latest update you can find on the web about how he’s doing now.

  25. sodaisgood Says:

    neither of those photos are of Huang
    first one being

    Geng Libo
    second being
    Ou Guifeng
    as K alton points out

    here is a photo of him doing better tho

    http://www.watchseasonepisode.com/2009/06/chinas-elephant-man-after-surgery.html

  26. you can see an updated picture of Huang on the National Geographic Channel website. Just search Huang Chuncai and you’ll see a tab that will give you an update. He looks much much better. Praise God!

  27. please keep us updated. we (and the rest of human being there) really wish to see him improve.

  28. Both Pictures DONT show this man!
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PQpPeMGQv90 here you see the results.

    • Thank you, I’m Brazilian and search for information about him (after the surgery) and was too frustrated with the disinteresting, indifference with the man. Please keep us updated.

  29. I’m just now seeing this show and came to the internet to find out the latest about him and can’t hardly find anything. I wonder if it’s China government keeping him from media. They could “at least” let people know how he is doing if they want us to donate to the hospital instead of directly to the family which is where I would prefer to donate.

  30. Darkplume Says:

    The men in the picture is not him. Look at his nose, there is no way that person is Huang Chuncai. I been looking for new news about him. But there is no information on the Internet about him since 2008. Nothing. I just hope he is alright. I even looked for his name with the word “death” but no even then I found any results, so I suppose he is not. Because, if he were death everybody would know.

  31. [...] after surgery – visits home After first writing about Huang Chuncai (April 20 and June 27) I had no idea how little information there was on this man. His first surgery is well documented. [...]

    • John Piggott Says:

      I write in September 2011, almost a year since the last posting on Huang, who I admire so much. Have you heard anything about how he is going and whether/how his life has improved? I truly hope things are better for him. What he has gone through for 30 years makes most people’s problems look puny. I wonder if he had the third operation. The previous two must have been gruelling. Perhaps another would have been too dangerous. Thank you so much for starting this conversation.

  32. Robin Baker Says:

    In the television program about Huang, he had no left eye, only a right. In the photo, it is the opposite. I doubt this is him. China seems to be reluctant to release any subsequent photos of subjects that have been featured on American television programming.

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