Shriner Magazine Spring 2023

Abie Orofacial clefts are one of the most common birth differences in the United States. Many babies born with cleft lip also have an opening in the roof of their mouth called a cleft palate. This occurs when the tissues that form the roof of the mouth don’t join together before birth and can cause functional changes in breathing, hearing, speaking and eating. Children may require multiple surgeries to correct the mouth, jaw and nose. Craniofacial differences can be caused by a combination of genetic and/ or environmental factors and are sometimes diagnosed before birth. Our physicians often meet with expectant parents to discuss our approach to cleft lip and/or palate repair and to help them know what to expect after delivery and in their baby’s first few months. Cleft repair at Shriners Children’s is done by experienced pediatric surgeons. Other members of a child’s care team may include speech therapists, audiologists, dentists and dental radiologists, child life special- ists and anesthesiologists. FACING CHALLENGES WITH CONFIDENCE

Abraham, called “Abie” by his family, was treated by Eric Liao, M.D., at Shriners Children’s Boston. “As soon as we met the cleft team, we knew we had found the right people to take care of Abie,” his mother, Marcy, said. Marcy recalled underestimating how dramatic the outcome of Abie’s surgery would be. “I remember Dr. Liao assuring us that once the repair was made, it would look like it never happened,” she said. “I didn’t think it was possible at the time, but he was right.”

“I’d like to say thank you to Dr. Gupta for fixing my spine and for putting up with me every time I asked when I could go back to dance …”

Chloe Shriners Children’s offers a variety of options for treatment of scoliosis. Sometimes a patient’s scoliosis is severe enough to require surgery. Chloe, an artist and dancer, was diagnosed with idiopathic adolescent scoliosis when she was 11. Shriners Children’s Chicago’s Chief of Staff Purnendu Gupta, M.D., explained that the diagnosis is done through a clinical exam, a neurologic exam and X-rays. “Here at Shriners, we have EOS technology, which is a way to do X-rays with less radiation,” Dr. Gupta added. Eventually, Chloe needed spinal fusion surgery, which Dr. Gupta performed, and she was officially cleared to return to dance just over a year later. “I’d like to say thank you to Dr. Gupta for fixing my spine and for putting up with me every time I asked when I could go back to dance,” Chloe said. “You’ve been so kind, and I am forever grateful for what you’ve done for me.” CUSTOM-MADE CARE


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2/27/23 9:22 AM

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