Hearing management

Updated 27 May 2015

Worcester girl gets new ears

Cassidy Sitella, a Grade 3 pupil from Nuwe Hoop Sentrum in Worcester was born without ears. However her life has now changed after she underwent reconstructive surgery.

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Cassidy Sitella, a Grade 3 pupil from Nuwe Hoop Sentrum in Worcester was born without ears. This is a rare congenital deformity called microcia and is where the external ears are underdeveloped or non-existent.

However her life has now changed after she underwent reconstructive surgery at Tygerberg Hospital to reconstruct her ears and Cassidy now no longer has to depend on a hearing aid to assist her poor hearing.

The surgery was performed as part of Smile Foundation’s Vodacom Smile Week.

Plastic and reconstructive surgeon Dr Alexander Zuhlke operated on Cassidy and said that while her new ears would have no effect on her hearing ability, they would certainly have an impact on her self-esteem.  

He explained that the procedure of making the ear involved opening a pocket under Cassidy’s skin and then taking cartilage was taken from her ribs which was then carved into an ear framework and placed into the pocket under the skin. They then placed a tube underneath to suck the skin into the cartilage to form an ear.

A second-stage operation is planned to complete the ear.

Source: Cape Argus, IOL

(November 2012)
 

 

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Hearing Expert

Penny Stevens is a Wits graduate of Audiology. She has been practising for 23 years, 21 of which have been in private practice. Penny is passionate about diagnostic audiology and vestibular assessment. Hearing aid fitting and managing hearing difficulties occupies most of her working day and she loves to know she has made a difference to her patient's lives. Penny is a registered member of the HPCSA as well as SAAA.

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