July 12, 2006

Marlie Casseus Having Third Surgery Tomorrow

By Tim | July 12, 2006 | Tags: General |

Marlie Casseus will have her third surgery tomorrow, July 13th, at 8am:

IKJ—Marlie Casseus, the Haitian girl that caught the world’s attention in 2005 because of the 16 pound tumor-like growth on her face, is now preparing once again to undergo surgery, tomorrow July 13th at 8:00 a.m. at Holtz Children’s Hospital.

Six months after her last surgery, in which the tumor-like growth on her face was completely extracted, the team of doctors led by Jesús Gómez D.D.S., a maxillofacial surgeon from the University of Miami Leonard M. Miller School of Medicine, will reconstruct the upper midface, forming a nasal bridge and upper lip and correcting her hipertelorism or extreme separation of her eyes.

“This operation will give Marlie a more structured face, reconstructing the parts that have been lost, and also provide support to her eyes,” explained Dr. Gómez. The medical team will use an implant of polyetilen, which comes in small parts, allowing them to rebuild Marlie’s features. During the operation, estimated to last approximately nine hours, Dr. Gómez will be accompanied by ocular plastic surgeons Wendy Lee and Kami Parsa, from the Bascom Palmer Eye Institute.

Marlie still has a long way to go; she will probably need one or two additional cosmetic surgeries. This is why the International Kids Fund (IKF), the non-profit organization that has sponsored her medical treatment, continues to raise funds to help her.

“My daughter and I are infinitely thankful for the help we have received and hope people continue lending us a hand because my little girl still needs more surgeries”, said the girl’s mother, Maleine Antoine.

People interested in making a tax-deductible donation to IKF can mail their check or money order to:

International Kids Fund
Re: Marlie Casseus
P.O. Box 012297
Miami, FL 33101
Miami Phone: 305-585-5888
Toll Free: 1-877-IKF-KIDS (1-877-453-5437)

Remember her in prayer that all will go well.

Related Stories:

OpinionBug: Marlie Casseus Updates

Update (7/13/2006 8:0pm):

Here’s the update I received:

Marlie Casseus underwent her third surgery earlier today at Holtz Children’s Hospital in Miami. The surgery began at 10:18 a.m. and was completed at 6:58 p.m. During the eight hour and 40 minutes operation and reconstruction of the upper mid portion of her face, Marlie’s nasal bridge and upper lip were formed and the separation of her eyes was corrected.

Marlie is currently in critical but stable condition in the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit.

Update (7/14/2006 6:37pm):

Marlie Casseus After Her Third Surgery

This is a copy of the press release regarding Marlie’s third surgery:

IKJ—Marlie Casseus, the Haitian girl with a 16 pound tumor-like growth on her face, is recovering from the third surgery conducted yesterday at Holtz Children’s Hospital to reconstruct the upper mid-portion of her face.

Six months after her last surgery, the team of doctors led by Jesús Gómez D.D.S., a maxillofacial surgeon from the University of Miami Leonard M. Miller School of Medicine, rebuilt her upper midface, forming a nasal bridge and upper lip and correcting her hipertelorism or extreme separation of her eyes.

“The operation went really well for Marlie and she is now recovering at the Intensive Care Unit. We have used an implant that comes in small parts, enabling us to give more harmony to her features” explained Dr. Gómez. During the operation, a team of specialists accompanied Dr. Gómez, among them ocular plastic surgeons Wendy Lee and Kami Parsa, from the Bascom Palmer Eye Institute.

Marlie will still need one or two more cosmetic surgeries and the International Kids Fund (IKF), a program of the Jackson Memorial Foundation that has sponsored her medical treatment, continues to raise funds to help her.

“She continues to improve every day emotionally and physically. Like many kids her age, she likes playing videogames and watching television, but above all, Marlie enjoys reading books for hours, especially cook books. She is an adolescent that has the hope and will to live, to be a normal person, to go to school and become a great artist when she grows up,” stated Maria Luisa Chea, director of IKF.

Shortly after her second operation Marlie was able to visit her family back in Haiti and also the Make a Wish Foundation granted her the opportunity to visit Disney. “Marlie is very happy because her life has completely changed and recently, for her 15th birthday, she told me her greatest wish is to be able to eat normally and go home,” said the girl’s mother, Maleine Antoine.

Marlie’s tumor-like growth had been brought about by a rare condition named Polysostotic Fibrous Dysplasia, which is characterized by uneven growth, pain, brittleness and deformity of the affected bones. The growth first became evident six years ago and it grew over Marlie’s nose and mouth, rendering her unable to eat, breathe or speak on her own. Before the two operations conducted last December and January by Dr. Gómez and his medical team at Holtz Children’s Hospital, only her eyes, nostrils and a tooth could be recognized from her severely swollen face.

People interested in making a tax-deductible donation to IKF can mail their check or money order to:

International Kids Fund
Re: Marlie Casseus
P.O. Box 012297
Miami, FL 33101
Miami Phone: 305-585-5888
Toll Free: 1-877-IKF-KIDS (1-877-453-5437)

It is very important to include “Marlie Casseus” on your check or money order in order to allocate the funds properly.

Donations can also be made online by visiting www.internationalkidsfund.org.

For further information, potential donors may also write to info@internationalkidsfund.org.

About the International Kids Fund (IKF)

The International Kids Fund (IKF) at Holtz Children’s Hospital, a program of the Jackson Memorial Foundation, seeks to provide medical care to needy children from around the world who suffer from serious illnesses that cannot be treated in their countries. The fund ensures these children receive the best care possible at Holtz Children’s Hospital of the University of Miami/Jackson Memorial Medical Center, one of the nation’s premier teaching hospitals. For more information or to make a contribution, contact the International Kids Fund at: P.O. Box 012297, Miami, FL 33101; 1 877 IKF KIDS; www.internationalkidsfund.org; or info@internationalkidsfund.org.

A higher resolution image of the above photo is available; just email me. The photo is about 1 mb in size.

Best wishes to Marlie; get well soon!

Update (7/19/2006 7:45pm):

Latest update on Marlie’s condition:

She is in the Intensive Care Unit, in good condition and recovering well from the surgery.

Update (8/7/2006 7:33am):

Did anyone see the story about Marlie on Discovery Health last night? It was heartbreaking in ways, seeing how Marlie has suffered. I was really touched when I saw Marlie cry after seeing herself in a mirror after her first surgery. Marlie was really looking good after the second surgery and I imagine that after her third surgery she’s even better! Marlie has been through so much, but she has made great strides toward a new life thanks to many good people.

Thanks to all that have helped her; without you, where would she be today?

God bless you and God bless Marlie and her family.

 

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