Fourteen year old Blessy Marie is a beautiful girl. She attends school and wants to become a teacher. That’s why she wants the surgery. Blessy’s speech is nasal due to a cleft soft palate. The soft palate is responsible for closing off the nasal passages during the act of swallowing, and also for closing off the airway. If the cleft is left untreated, air escapes through the nose, causing speech to be perceived as nasal. “Now the kids make fun of me by the way I talk” explains Blessy . It took 10 hours for her and her mother Marites to travel from Surigao City. The procedure to fix Blessy’s cleft is called a Furlow double Z plasty. This lengthens the soft palate allowing it to function properly. Marites was overwhelmed upon seeing her daughter in the recovery room. She says, “This is what I prayed for.”
The following day, Blessy and Marites are both doing well.