One Miracle at a Time

Every child who comes under our care becomes a part of our family. Read about just a few of our little miracles.

Bilateral Cleft

Meet Ezra. I visited him and his family in the NICU where they were worried about his unexpected diagnosis. I reassured them that this was treatable and we immediately came up with a plan to help Ezra achieve normal speech, feeding and appearance. At age 3 he is a healthy and happy boy!

read more about cleft palate surgery and treatment

Unilateral Cleft

Meet another little boy Dustin. He was born with a unilateral cleft lip which is a fairly common diagnosis. After molding and just one surgery we were done. Dustin is moving on and living a normal life. Look how cute his smile is now!

read more about cleft palate surgery and treatment

Pierre Robin Syndrome

Maiya was born with Pierre Robin (small recessed jaw) and initially needed a ventilator to breath. At 9 days old, she underwent successful jaw advancement by distraction. Within one week her airway was opened which allowed the removal of the ventilator and avoided a trachestomy (a breathing tube which is traditionally placed for 3 to 4 years). Now at 1 year, she is a happy healthy girl with normal jaw position and continues to breathe all on her own!

read more about Pierre Robin Syndrome

Lefort I

This little boy first had a cleft palate surgery. Some children’s upper jaw growth can be inhibitited as a result. He had to have a Lefort I, his upper jaw moved forward to align his teeth and improve his breathing.

The halo apparatus was used over the course of 2 months to slowly move the jaw and face forward, eliminating the need for the usual second procedure.

Even at 7 years of age he handled it great! “While it was annoying to wear, I could play and swim while it was on. Dr Schmelzer says they come in 4 colors now! All the other kids want one.”

read more about Lefort I Advancement

Lefort III

Meet Courtney who has Apert Syndrome. She lived with a breathing tube and all of her fingers and toes fused together!

After releasing her fingers and toes, we recently performed a Lefort III, moving her entire face forward, in order to improve her appearance and eliminating the breathing tube.

learn more about Apert Syndrome and treatments

Metopic Synostosis

This cute little boy was born with a fused growth plate in his skull. As a result he has a triangular shape to his skull. At 7 months, he underwent surgery to reshape his skull. This was a one-time surgery, requiring no post-operative helmet therapy. He spent 3 days in the hospital and recovered in only a 3 weeks! We take pride in shaving as little as possible of patient’s hair “And Dr. Schmelzer shampooed my head himself.”

learn more about non-syndromic craniosynostosis

Sagittal Synostosis

Although most children come to us as an infant, or very young child, unfortunately sometimes the diagnosis can be missed. In Olivia’s case, she didn’t come to me until she was 12 years of age. She had both a severe deformity of her skull and developmental delay. After two large reconstructive surgeries, she now likes to show off her look by wearing a ponytail and smiling as she catches up in school.

learn more about non-syndromic craniosynostosis

Unicoronal Synostosis

Meet Abygal. This cutey was born with right-sided Coronal Synostosis (skull fusion). This causes her forehead and eye to appear depressed on her right side. At 6 months of age she underwent one skull reconstruction to move her forehead and eye forward. And she did not require any helmet or molding devices as part of her recovery.

learn more about non-syndromic craniosynostosis

Tumors of the Head and Neck

Ila presented to the emergency room with a protruding and painful left eye, headaches and changes in vision. After a CT scan, it was discovered that she had a large tumor pushing on her eye. With removal and reconstruction of her skull and eye her symptoms resolved. Now at 6 months out her eye position and vision are normal with no visible scars. She is very happy with the results and has expressed her appreciation and gratitude on her blog.

read more about tumor treatment

Ear Abnormalities

This little girl was being made fun of at school, yes kids can be cruel. She asked me to ‘fix her ears.’ In a short surgery we were able to make her ears less prominent. Although she’s not smiling in her mugshot, she says she is happy and no longer being teased at school.

learn more about ear surgery


We probably see 3 or 4 of these patients a month. The usual course of action is ‘watchful waiting’ and they naturally regress.

Sometimes we need to treat with medicine, or surgical intervention.

This little girl’s hemangioma was surgically removed because it was near her eye and could affect her vision. Looks like she is seeing and smiling just fine now!

read more about vascular malformations and treatment


I frequently get calls to the emergency room for injuries to the face including: dog bites, sporting injuries, as well as car or bike accidents. This little boy was bitten by his family dog with significant injury to his lip. He was immediately taken to the operating room to repair and realign his lip.

learn more about pediatric trauma