Institute for Plastic Surgery 
Phone: 217-545-6314
Fax: 217-545-2588
E-mail: plastics@siumed.edu 
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Mission Trips

Two Southern Illinois plastic surgery residents Ryan Diederich and Theresa Hegge, along with Therese Svetlik, a surgery nurse from Saint John’s Hospital, were recently part of an Operation Smile International mission team to Nakura, Kenya from March 30th-April 9th. 

The team consisted of 60 doctors, nurses, speech therapists, medical records, research, and other logistic and volunteer personnel who provided free surgical procedures and medical care to children and adults suffering from cleft lip and palate deformities, acute and chronic burn scars, and other hand and head and neck congenital or acquired deformities. 

The mission team screened 241 patients over three days and performed 148 surgical procedures over five days.  Some patients and their families journeyed from several hundred miles to be seen and treated by the Operation Smile team. 

Many of the cases were challenging but the mission was very successful with no real surgical or medical complications.  Pictures of some of the patients operated on by the Illinois surgeons as well as selected hospital scenes can be viewed on our website.  For more information on the Kenya mission, go to Operation Smile.   Anyone interested in volunteering or donating money to Operation Smile International can find out more by visiting the website at www.operationsmile.org

Day 3 in Nakuru Kenya as the Reagan Fellow with Operation Smile. Janis (middle) was one of the attending surgeons, and Therese Svetlik (left) is an OR nurse from St John's. This was the OR3 team and we performed 6 cleft surgeries that day! The SIU team - Dr. Theresa Hegge and OR Nurse Therese Svetlik in front of the daily schedules.

Day 3 in Nakuru, Kenya as the Reagan Fellow with Operation Smile.  Janis (middle) was one of the attending surgeons, and Therese Svetlik (left) is an OR nurse from St John's.  This was the OR3 team and we performed 6 cleft surgeries that day!

The SIU team - Dr. Theresa Hegge and OR Nurse Therese Svetlik in front of the daily schedules.

Dr. Theresa Hegge Operating on a cleft lip on Day 3 of the 2011 Nakuru, Kenya Operation Smile Mission. Dr. Theresa Hegge with one of her cleft lip patients the day after surgery in Nakuru, Kenya.

Dr. Theresa Hegge Operating on a cleft lip on Day 3 of the 2011 Nakuru, Kenya Operation Smile Mission.

Dr. Theresa Hegge with one of her cleft lip patients the day after surgery in Nakuru, Kenya.

Dr. Russell, a local plastic surgeon and two Southern Illinois plastic surgery residents Ryan Diederich and Theresa Hegge, along with Therese Svetlik, a surgery nurse from Saint John’s Hospital.

Operation Smile Team