Hassan was found in Harar in May 2003 living with the devastating aftermath of noma, a gangrenous infection that left a hole on the left side of his face. The noma had attacked his jaw muscles and locked it shut, preventing him from eating properly. His nose had caved in. Hassan was a very introspective and did not talk or look at people.
Hassan required a very complex seven hour operation to give back function and better appearance to his mouth and nose. Having used skin harvested from his body to rebuild the mouth and a muscle transplanted from the scalp, Dr Peter Ayliffe of University College London unlocked Hassan’s jaw to give him back some movement.
When Hassan saw the excellent results, his mental state improved dramatically. He is now able to talk properly and eat normally with others.
Project Harar Ethiopia returned to see Hassan in March 2004 and in 2005. His face has healed very well and he and his mother are delighted by his great improvements, both physical and psychological.
Now much more positive about the future, Hassan met a woman and married in Harar.
Five years on, Hassan made touch with our Ethiopian Director, Sebsibe Ayele, to share some wonderful news with us: the birth of his son.
We raised a fantastic £47,870 during the Big Gi...
Listen to two BBC World Service interviews with Project Harar surgical teams from 2007. First up, an interview with Sissay Befikadu, who was in charge of the cleft programme at Yekatit-12 hospital. And secondly, an interview with Klaas Marck, a Dutch plastic surgeon and chair of the Dutch Noma Foundation.