A complete smile
Five-year-old Syahrini was born with a cleft lip, a cogenital condition that appeared as a break in her upper lip. This is how plastic surgeon LTC (Dr) (NS) Chong Si Jack reconstructed her smile.
Story by Clara Lock
Photos by Clara Lock, Jonathan Ryan and Yong Shu Fui
Plastic and reconstructive surgeon MAJ (Dr) (NS) Matthew Yeo screens Syahrini to make ure she is fit for surgery. " We will do the operation today, okay?" he ask her father. He nods his consent.
Syahrini is quiet during the wait for surgery, but she cries as her father, Mr Syahrun, carries her to the operating table.
LTC (Dr) (NS) Chong marks out Syahrini's lips before surgery. He will repair her oral muscles and correct her left nostril. Her nostril is much wider and flatter than normal, so LTC (Dr) (NS) Chong will narrow the base of the nose and sharpen the tip.
When the surgery is over, LTC (Dr) (NS) Chong is pleased with the outcome. "she won't look perfect, but from far you can't tell," he said.
That evening, fast craft utility ferried Syahrini and the other patients back to shore. The stiches will off in a week, and Syahrini can return to school with a complete smile.