Wonder: Opening Eyes and Raising Awareness for Facial Deformities

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Wonder the Movie

The movie “Wonder” highlights the life of a young boy named Auggie who has Treacher Collins syndrome.

Treacher Collins syndrome is a rare medical facial deformity that is characterized by deformities of the ears, eyes, cheekbones and chin. “Wonder” is being praised for raising awareness for children with facial deformities and educating people, one movie theatre seat at a time, that everyone is different.

We know all too well that bullying is a problem for children today that has been magnified by social media and increased peer pressure. For children with craniofacial differences, family and social support is even more important to give them a strong support system and the tools they need to understand and navigate life in spite of their condition.

“Wonder” follows Auggie and his family as he starts school for the first time after many years of being homeschooled. Throughout the movie, Auggie is bullied, leading to him hating his appearance, until he finds friends who accept him for who he is, regardless of what he looks like.

What the movie tends to leave out is the medical side of having a child with a cleft or craniofacial diagnosis. This includes the constant need to schedule your daily life around appointments and, sometimes, long surgery recovery times.

Everyone involved in pediatric care at Our Lady of the Lake Children’s Health is focused on providing state-of-the-art medical care, as well as emotional support which is crucial for these young children,who often require multiple surgeries. That emotional support reduces anxiety and helps them through the recovery process. The nurses, anesthesia providers and doctors are there for patients and their parents.

We work together to coordinate the care of children with cleft and craniofacial disorders, like Treacher Collins Syndrome. With specialized counseling and breakthrough medical technology, our team works with each patient and their parents to find the best solutions for their medical condition.

Click here to read our latest issue of Amazing magazine for more on how we approach surgery as a work of heart at Our Lady of the Lake Children’s Health.

About Dr. George Zakhary

Dr. Zakhary George Zakhary, DDS, MD, attended medical school at LSU and dental school at Oklahoma University. He went on to complete both his general surgery internship and oral & maxillofacial surgery residency at LSU Health in Shreveport. He completed comprehensive training in the cleft and craniofacial surgery Fellowship at LSU. He is based at Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center where he has been appointed to educate future surgical residents. His primary areas of practice include cleft and craniofacial surgery, orthognathic surgery, facial trauma, and benign head and neck pathology. Call (225) 769-2774 for more information about our Pediatric Craniomaxillofacial Surgery Clinic.
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