For many people that are victims of violence, be it domestic or other, they are often left with resulting scars that are daily reminders of the trauma they suffered and have nowhere to turn for additional help following reconstructive surgery. As shown recently on NBC TV Channel 12 in Richmond, VA, Dayette Hayes was referred to cosmetic surgeon Dr. Joseph Niamtu, III who has offered on-going pro-bono treatment to Dayette in an effort to reduce the resulting scars. In a story worse than anyone can imagine, Dayette became a victim of domestic violence when an enraged former boyfriend stalked her and struck her multiple times with a machete causing deep and disfiguring cuts on her face and body. Dayettte has undergone multiple treatments to repair the deep physical wounds she suffered and has now been placed in the loving and caring hands of Dr. Joseph Niamtu who is using a combination of cosmetic surgery procedures, fillers, neurotoxins and laser treatments to help reduce the scars, and rebuild her self-esteem.
Where was Dayette originally treated?
She was originally seen by a team of surgeons at Virginia Commonwealth University who acted quickly to save her life and do their best to minimize her injuries.
How did you meet her?
Dayette was actually referred to me by a Richmond, VA police detective that was working with her following the incident. He knew of my cosmetic surgery work and other pro-bono work and asked if I could offer my help.
What were your first thoughts when you met the patient?
My first thought was “Oh my God, how did she survive this attack”, qickly followed by “what a wonderful and strong women she is.” She had been treated by trauma surgeons and other medical specialists that had fixed her lacerations and fractures, as well as given her medical and surgical care, but she still had resulting and painful scarring when I first met her. But boy, what a wonderfully upbeat and inspiring human being she is. The minute I met her, I just knew I had to use my cosmetic surgery training and expertise to help her.
What procedures have you performed so far, and for how long?
I have been treating her for just over two years. During that time I have performed six surgeries, as well as Botox, fillers and laser work to help reduce the appearance of the scars. This is a case that will be on-going and I will continue working with her for as long as she wants me to.
You are a busy doctor. How do you find the time to offer such a high level of care pro-bono?
I have been blessed with a great staff at my practice and with great patients who know me very well. I devote time to my family, my friends and everyone in my life and that sometimes includes people with a very real need such as this. There are other clinics and charitable foundations that offer many types of medical care pro-bono, but sometimes they need more of the surgical expertise that I have. When I meet a patient like Dayette who, after all she has been through, manages to keep a positive outlook and has the spirit to help other people only inspires me to find the time to be of service to others wherever I can.
Dr. Joseph Niamtu, III practice in Richmond, VA. He is well known in international cosmetic facial surgery circles as surgeon, teacher and author and is regarded as a key opinion leader by academics and clinicians worldwide. He is a fellow of the American Academy of Cosmetic Surgery and the American Society for Laser Medicine and Surgery. He is board certified by the American Board of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery. His practice is limited to cosmetic facial surgery. To learn more visit: www.lovethatface.com.