Mid Wales

Lembit Opik to have surgery on 'wonky' face years after accident

Lempik Opik Image copyright Getty Images

Lembit Opik is due to undergo an operation to correct his "wonky" face, 18 years after a paragliding accident.

The former Liberal Democrat MP for Montgomeryshire said he needed surgery as his teeth are "disintegrating", making it difficult to eat.

It follows his 1998 accident in which he fell 98ft (30m), sustaining serious facial injuries and breaking his sternum, ribs and back in 12 places.

The operation on the NHS was medical and not cosmetic, he added.

Psychological impact

Speaking to the Jason Mohammad programme, Mr Opik said he was already two years into the treatment and will have a further two years of work after going under the knife.

"Even at that time I knew it was going to have a life-changing effect on me, not just physically but psychologically," he said.

"Interestingly enough it took some time for that effect to take hold and it's still a driver in changing my thinking today."

The operation on 26 January will see his jaw broken and reconstructed.

"Whether or not I look like George Clooney, or indeed Nick Clegg, at least I will be able to eat," he joked.

Mr Opik lost his parliamentary seat in 2010.

More on this story