A cleft occurs when certain midline soft tissues do not fuse together during the development of the fetus. Clefts can involve the lip, the roof of the mouth, and the soft tissue in the back of the mouth.
Every three minutes around the world a child is born with a cleft. A child with a cleft has twice the odds of dying before their first birthday. Children with cleft conditions who survive may have difficulty eating, speaking, hearing or breathing properly. In some places, they are shunned and rejected. And in too many cases, their parents can't afford the surgeries they need to live a productive life.
Every child deserves access to safe, quality surgical care. Every child deserves a future filled with hope.
Causes of Clefts
Another 1 lakh desperately need the treatment.
The exact causes of cleft lip and palate are not known. But most experts agree that these are "multi-factorial" and may include a genetic predisposition as well as environmental issues such as drug and alcohol use, smoking, maternal illness, infections and lack of vitamin B folic acid.
A Simple Surgery
A SURGERY THAT TAKES $250 AND AS LITTLE AS 45 MINUTES, PREVENTS A LIFETIME OF SUFFERING
LMRF not only makes quality cleft lip and palate surgery available across Bangladesh, it provides it completely free of cost to everyone who needs it.
Since 2001, LMRF has sponsored over 6300 safe, quality surgeries across Chittagong Division of Bangladesh, totally free of cost.
This year we will provide free cleft surgery and related treatment for more than 750 children in Bangladesh.
|Primary repair||- Repaired at approximately 3-6 months.|
|Palatal repair||- Repaired at approximately 3-6 months|
|Secondary repair||- If needed, repaired at approximately 4-6 Years|
|Alveolar cleft||- Repaired at 8-10 years|
|Final repair||- If needed repaired at 14-16 years|
Collaboration with Partner Doctors and Hospitals
Quality free surgery for cleft defects, anywhere in Bangladesh.
To date LMRF works with partner doctors and hospitals in Bangladesh for providing treatment to deserving children. The process of selecting "partners" is tough and detailed, but fair and completely transparent.
3 hospitals and 8 doctors have been collaborated to become LMRF partners
Ensuring Safety & Quality
We monitor the quality of every single surgery and patient safety is our #1 priority.
LMRF also maintains secure medical records on all patients undergoing surgery for review of surgical quality, education, and evaluation purposes.
Need for a comprehensive cleft lip / palate treatment program
Regrettably, in Bangladesh as well as in many other developing countries, there is little public awareness about Cleft lip / Palate as a medical condition. We are confident that with quality trained medical staff surgeon and a public awareness campaign and treatment for all Cleft lip / Palate children is achievable in Bangladesh. Moreover, the program must ensure that the parents of children with Cleft lip / Palate are informed about the importance of having their Children under the treatment program, so that the corrections achieved during the initial identification of their deformities.
Progress toward the attainment of LMRF objectives and values, we formulated following strategies:
A. Local Capacity Building
1. Screening for Cleft lip / Palate deformity
Screening for Cleft lip / Palate deformity at the first examination after birth is necessary for early detection and best correction of the deformity. For children born in a healthcare facility, screening for Cleft lip / Palate deformity will ideally occur at or soon after birth by the obstetrician, SBA, or nurse. For births outside a health facility, the screening should be done at first immunization and during birth registration. LMRF team is working to build up the screening program with doctors, nurses, SBAs, TBAs, female health assistances, health inspectors, community health assistants from each District hospitals, Upazilla health complexes, Maternity care centers, and different NGO health care centers in Chittagong division. Our well trained Area Coordinators are documenting the project at the Thana, Upazila level, distributing educational brochures, leaflets, and providing in-service training in:
- How to screen for Cleft lip / Palate;
- How Cleft lip / Palate is treated & negative impact of belated surgery;
- Where to refer children with Cleft lip / Palate (appropriate nearest treatment Center/ Campaign); and
- Spreading messages of our free treatment through our beneficiary patients.
Educating nurses and others who are or will be involved in maternity care to recognize Cleft lip / Palate and refer children with the condition to treatment centers is of vital importance. Thus, we plan to distribute the educational brochures to all nursing schools, district hospitals in both provinces, and important social organizations that provide resources for women and mothers.
2. Treatment with the distinguished plastic surgeons
We are so lucky and confident enough to have some specialized plastic surgeons of country and abroad in our surgery team. We feel proud to address Dr. Ayub Ali, Associate Professor, NITORE, Dhaka, Dr. Mrinal Kanti Das, Associate Professor, CMCH, Dr. Asrafuzzaman Khaled, Assistant Professor, CMCH, Dr. Mirza Tayebul Islam, Assistant Professor, Comilla Medical College and Hospital, Dr. Ismat Ara Begum, Professor, Dhaka Dental College as our surgeon.
3. Workshops and Seminars
Workshops and Seminars on Review of Congenital Cleft lip / Palate free treatment is going to be organized in all districts in a round up session. The main focus of this workshop and seminar is to concern all of the doctors of Govt. and private Hospitals so that they can refer them to us for a better treatment.
Lack of physical and financial access for cleft lip/palate been identified as a barrier to seeking cleft lip/palate care in Bangladesh. To improve physical access for cleft lip/palate detection and treatment project should be decentralized. Keeping this in sagacity we organize cleft lip/palate treatment campaign as regular basis in Chakaria, Comilla and Noakhali which will cover Chakaria- (Cox'sbazar, Bandarban, Kutubdia Island), Comilla-(B. Baria, Chandpur, Comilla) and Noakhali- (Noakhali, Feni, Lakshmipur) districts.
C. Raising Public Awareness
There is lack of awareness within the general public that the Cleft lip / Palate deformity is correctable, especially if treated early. To raise public awareness, Cure Cleft design and distribute posters, PVC banners, stickers alerting the public especially in important public places, namely Railway stations, bus terminals, markets of every thana / upazilas of whole Chittagong Division. Every part of the society but especially young couples should be addressed with great emphasis. The goal is to ensure the broadest possible dissemination of the information to the public and aid the identification of the condition at early ages of life.
D. Clinical Treatment Goals
The emphasis of the project is initially on building the local capacity necessary to identify, refer, and successfully treat children with cleft lip/palate. Once this infrastructure is in place and treatment capacity exists, the program emphasis will shift to its clinical treatment goal. Given the considerable challenges involved with local capacity building in remote areas, the number of babies identified in each Upazila should be tracked to ensure babies from remote areas are not being denied treatment due to transport access or other factors.
E. Comprehensive Care or Specialized Service
We provide our patient a complete comprehensive service for their final improvement whoever needed this service. The services include Speech Therapy, Ortho-prosthodontics Service and Psychological & Treatment Counseling.
|District||Population||Every Annual Patient||Children Treated|
Chittagong Division Map