In Third World countries, surgical correction of cleft lips/palates are unaffordable, especially the indigent population. Majority of children born with cleft lip/palate in developing countries are too poor that they can barely buy food to eat, and thus can never afford surgery that they so desperately need. As these children grow, "they quickly learn that life with a cleft can be a long and painful struggle, often hidden away by their family out of shame and ignorance." In some countries they are not allowed to attend school or hold a job. Most of these children with cleft lip/palate will never be able to speak or eat properly. Cleft lip and/or cleft palate surgery "provide new smiles, hope & a new beginning to children who otherwise would lead lives of isolation and shame." Let's help support the non-profit organizations Smile Train and Operation Smile to give these children a second chance at life.
Emmanuel De La Cruz MD, PLLC
Houston Plastic Surgeon