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Free cleft lip palate ops start at Mpilo

by Staff reporter
05 May 2017 at 06:42hrs | Views
MPILO Central Hospital in Bulawayo will conduct free correctional surgery on people afflicted with cleft lip starting tomorrow.

The operations, conducted by surgeons from the United States of America, will be carried out until Thursday next week.

Cleft lip and cleft palate are facial and oral malformations that occur very early in pregnancy while the baby is developing inside the womb.

According to doctors, clefting occurs when there is not enough tissue in the mouth or lip area and the tissue available does not join together properly.

Mpilo Central Hospital Clinical Director, Dr Solwayo Ngwenya, told The Chronicle yesterday that US-based Operation of Hope foundation will be in Bulawayo from May 6 to 11.

"We appreciate this initiative. They do quite a lot of good work for our community because cleft lip is quite disfiguring. The operation will be life changing for our children," Dr Ngwenya said.

He urged patients to come forward for registration beginning Sunday.

"We are expecting the team to arrive on Friday. We will have our meetings on Saturday and they will start screening patients on Sunday. The programme is set to run from Monday up until Thursday. However, we encourage people to come earlier and not wait for the last day.

"All those who are in need of surgery should come to the hospital where they will be examined."

The team hopes to provide between 30 and 40 patients with the gift of a free smile.

Dr Ngwenya said the team will be coming to Mpilo Central Hospital for the third time. Previously, they had been conducting the surgeries in Harare only.

The foundation performed 16 successful operations in May last year at Mpilo Central Hospital while 40 patients were operated on in November 2016.

The Operation of Hope Foundation has performed more than 2 000 cleft lip and palate operations in the last 10 years.

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Source - chronicle