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PORT JEFFERSON, NY, December 27, 2011 /24-7PressRelease/ -- Saline, an 11 year old Kenyan girl received the first of three surgeries last week. Saline had been rejected from all major charities due to the complexity of her facial deformity. She was born with a cleft lip and palate and then infected with NOMA disease. NOMA is a flesh eating disease caused by malnutrition, poor sanitation and dehydration. Estimates show 80-90% die from the disease. Click here to see YouTube video.
Dr. Leon Klempner founded Coolsmiles Orthodontics in 1978 with offices in Medford and Port Jefferson, NY. In addition to treating local patients with traditional braces and Invisalign, he has been volunteering on overseas missions to help children without hope for the past fifteen years. Dr. Klempner has helped thousands of children with cleft lips and palates through his work with Operation Smile, Smile Train and Health Volunteers Overseas.
He established the not for profit Smile Rescue Fund for Kids to help those children that are beyond the limits of traditional international charities.
He keeps the community informed, accepts donations and welcomes volunteers through his social media sites. For more updates and to follow Saline's progress, you can go to the Smile Rescue Fund for Kids Facebook page, website and blog.
According to Klempner, he received an email on Dec. 16 that told him that Saline's extensive facial surgery took more than eight hours. Apparently there was major tissue damage due to her previous history of NOMA disease, referring to Saline's additional diagnosis of a bacteria that destroys facial tissue.
A team of Kenyan surgeons used the tissue in her neck to reconstruct her face. Whether there is enough healthy blood supply to maintain the graft is questionable, Klempner said. The surgeons are concerned that the graft may not be sustainable because of the impact of the NOMA.
The orthodontist said that receiving updated information about Saline's condition is difficult and that our prayers are with Saline.
To read recent newspaper articles about the surgery - Times Beacon Record Newspaper.
The Smile Rescue Fund for Kids was founded by Dr. Leon Klempner of Coolsmiles Orthodontics, a New York orthodontist with offices located in Port Jefferson and Medford, NY. He has a strong professional interest in helping children born with facial deformities such as cleft lip and palate. To become a member of the fundraising committee, donate directly or follow Saline's progress, visit www.smilerescuefund.org, send an email to [email protected] or visit the organization's Facebook page or Blog
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