Writer: Nichole Mitchell

Nonfiction Form. No VO.


Opening Audio
2;53;17 Life is challenging enough. Life just brings with it everyday challenges to begin with, and my goal is to allow these children to enter the world with no more challenges than everybody else has.


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Music Cue: Endorphin Release


In my practice, I do primarily cleft lip and palate repair, craniosynostosis repair, as well as facial trauma.


2;17;02 As you go through your training, which is very extensive, I sort of narrowed the scope of my interest, and I found that I was most passionate when I operated in the head and neck region.
2;56;23 It was really distinct to me.

I wanted to be more focused. That’s my personality.


2;48;13 I am the only plastic surgeon here on Long Island who dedicates their practice to pediatric craniofacial surgery.

What makes my practice unique is that

2;20;22 I very rarely see my patients in an exam room. I think it makes them nervous. And the majority of my exams that I have to do, I can do with them sitting on my couch in my office, and then they can play with their toys and their siblings can play with the toys while I speak to the parents about the nuts and bolts of what we have to do going forward.


2;49;17 I connect with the kids.

I never wear a white coat in the office. It scares them.

They come to my office and they have a playroom to play in while I’m examining them and they don’t know I’m examining them.


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Music Cue: Law of Attraction Hypnosis


My commitment to the field, I think, is also in not only operating and taking care of these children, but also in contributing either new techniques or even just reporting outcomes, which is very important in any specialty. So I’ve been involved and will continue to be involved in many of our national meetings, like the American Society of Plastic Surgery, the American Cleft Palate, and Craniofacial Society.


2;41;44 I think the onus is on the physician to stay current in our field and I think a way of doing that is attending these meetings and not only attending them but participating in them by presenting our work, getting feedback from our colleagues, if you don’t get input from your colleagues nationally or internationally, I think you’re doing yourself and your patients a disservice.


2;24;02 And also, I’m able to work with my partners.
2;24;46 Here, we have a residency program where we’re training residents and fellows, so I think when you’re around young people and you’re training them, it forces you to stay current with all of the techniques.


2;38;43 In addition to treating these craniofacial disorders here in this country, I’ve also done some traveling with medical missions as do some of my partners. I’ve gone to Vietnam with Project Vietnam which was just a wonderful experience and it’s something that I would like to continue to do on an annual basis. I think it helps everyone just maintain perspective.


2;44;43 It’s not only important to me to be involved internationally, like going on these medical missions, but I’d also like to be involved locally as well.

I currently sit on the board of a pediatric charity, a local charity on Long Island that started on Long Island, and basically its application to my patients is very important which is why I joined. It deals with bullying that children go through from when they’re little — so when they’re made fun of, perhaps the way they look — and it also extends to cyber bullying that a lot of the teenagers go through.


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Music Cue: Happiness Hypnosis


One of the most satisfying things is not only seeing the effect that I can have on the family as a whole and the parents and bringing the baby out from the operating room and having the parents hug me and cry and be thankful for the change that was made, but also when the kids are a little older and they can talk to me and they come in and at one point, they come in crying to me saying, “The kids at school are making fun of me,” and then after surgery they come back and they’re smiling and they’re not crying anymore and kids aren’t teasing them anymore.


2;34;16 Life is challenging enough.

To have the stigma of having a deformity, a congenital deformity, can have an unbelievable impact on kids and how they eventually develop as young adults.

It’s hard to see them go through that, and if I can make any difference and help them It’s just wonderful.


Brand Position: Personally connecting with patients.