UPDATE 4/29: Doctors removed a four-pound tumor during Henneglise's 12-hour surgery Monday.
Fortunately, the tumor had not invaded the base of the scull. Although the chances are slim the eye will be able to see again, they are giving it the best shot at success by reconstructing a new eye socket.
Dr. Magee did a relatively small segmental bone repositioning of the left lower jaw. The tumor also changed the angulation of the lower jaw so follow up surgery will likely be necessary.
Although there has been a dramatic increase in tone and texture of the cheek and lip skin, there is still redundant skin of her left cheek. Because doctors can’t predict how much more it will assume a normal shape, surgeons decided to leave a bit of surplus skin. A decision to try and gain a near perfect immediate result would have potentially jeopardized the long term result.
Doctors say she is doing well – her tube will likely come out Tuesday.
UPDATE 4/28: Henneglise Dorvial went into surgery just after 10:30 a.m. Monday morning and is expected to be in surgery until midnight or later. She has an ophthamologist, a neurosurgeon and two cranial facial specialists on the surgical team.
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VIRGINIA BEACH -- Hennglise Dorvial is occupied by endless hours on an iPad like any teen her age – setting records on a mobile device she just picked up for the first time ever. And like any 15-year-old, she rarely looks up from her game during a conversation.
But physically, Hennglise isn’t like other teens. Four years ago, a benign tumor called an ameloblastoma, began growing inside of Hennglise’s maxillary sinus. It has expanded from the size of a pea to the size of two grapefruits. Without treatment, the tumor would continue to grow.
Hennglise quit school in the 5th grade after her tumor multiplied twice it's size in a year. She could no longer learn in an environment where she felt ridiculed. She says her 14-year-old sister is her only friend.
Hennglise's mother, Yvrose, says she can't wait to bring her daughter back to Haiti to present her to her family again.
Through the generosity of worldwide sponsors, Hennglise and Yvrose traveled from Haiti to seek treatment for the massive facial tumor pressing on her brain, pushing her left eye so far up and out that it has lost function.
They arrived in Virginia Beach one week ago and are expected to stay for at least six weeks to ensure the highest level of postoperative care.
Hennglise will receive surgery to remove the ameloblastoma at the Children’s Hospital of the Kings Daughters in Norfolk on Monday.
Operation Smile CEO and Co-Founder Dr. William Magee, who will be operating along with two other Hampton Roads-based surgeons, says it is the largest tumor he has had to remove.
He believes optimal results can be achieved with a single surgery, which he estimates will take between 8 -12 hours.
“Operation Smile is blessed with a strong relationship with the Children’s Hospital of the King’s Daughters here in the Norfolk-Virginia Beach area,” said Dr. Magee. “This hospital is able to handle virtually any tertiary care needed. Because of its strong talent pool in craniofacial surgery/plastic surgery, pediatric neurosurgery, pediatric anesthesia, state of the art operation room and postoperative and intensive care units, as well as superb nursing and medical professionals which staff these areas, virtually every aspect of Hennglise’s care is on exceptionally strong footing.”
Dr. Magee says Hennglise will never get vision back in her right eye but her skin should contract back to its regular form.
In the days leading up to the procedure, Hennglise says she’s not nervous about surgery. Rather, she’s excited to see what she will look like.
“I want to look in the mirror and see I’m not the same,” she said quietly, looking up from her loaned iPad for just a moment.