For three years, Janet Sylva was unable to eat, talk, or smile. The 12-year-old girl from The Gambia had a tumor the size of a grapefruit growing on her jaw that left her unable to even close her mouth.
But now Janet is beaming after a groundbreaking US surgery removed the six-pound tumor – one of the largest New York doctors had ever seen.
The mass had made her breathing so difficult that they were afraid she might die within a year if nothing was done.
At a press conference on Thursday, surgeons revealed that recovery since the operation has gone smoothly and that Janet can finally return home.
Beaming: Janet Sylva (left) and her mother, Philomena, smile during a press conference at Cohen Children’s Medical Center in New Hyde Park, New York, where a groundbreaking surgery took place to remove a tumor that was growing in Janet’s mouth
Crippling pain: The tumor has been growing for more than three years and reached the size of a grapefruit, leaving Janet unable to eat properly, talk or even close her mouth
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