When Romana Akhter was just a couple days old, she developed a hemangioma, a build-up of blood vessels in the skin. It quickly spread, leaving disfigurements on her face, particularly her right side.
Now 19 and in her first year of college at Miami Dade College, Akhter is on her way to a new look, thanks to Baptist Children’s Hospital’s 13th Annual Day of Smiles. Four surgeons, with the assistance of nurses, planned to perform corrective facial surgeries on six children Saturday at the hospital, which donates its facilities for the procedures.
“I never used to talk to anyone,” said Akhter, “I thought I would have to deal with this for the rest of my life.”
Because of her family’s financial strains, Akhter didn’t think her family could afford to pay for the corrective surgery. Saturday’s surgery is free.