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Fifteen-Year-Old Katya Has a Heart Defect.
Heart Surgery Can Save Her Life. Please Help.

Katya is a fifteen-year-old girl with a congenital heart defect. Endovascular surgery can save her life. Dr. Sean Levchuck at Saint Francis Hospital will perform the surgery for free, but the cost of expendable medical supplies, airfare, living expenses and support for the family is $8,565. Russian Gift of Life USA’s Moscow partner the children’s charity Rusfond has helped fund the family’s flight (Moscow - New York – New York - Moscow) for $602.

Russian Gift of Life USA has raised the additional funds needed for Katya's heart surgery and living expenses while in the US.


Katya has a VSD (a ventricular septal defect), a condition in which the wall that separates the lower heart chambers has one or more holes. She was first diagnosed with this condition at birth and has been waiting a decade for help. Treatment for this heart defect in the area where Katya lives is non-existent. If the VSD is not closed, Katya risks heart failure, atrial fibrillation, pulmonary over-circulation, pulmonary hypertension, stroke and in several years - death. Katya is from the Smolensk Region of Russia.


Katya's defect can be treated without the need for open-heart surgery, using a medical device called an occluder.


Through a minimally invasive catheter-based procedure, Dr. Levchuck, Chairman of Pediatric Cardiology at Saint Francis Hospital, will be able to correct the girl's heart condition so he can live like other girls her age.

Katya's life-saving heart surgery was

successfully performed on October 2, 2013.




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