Please Help 2 Year Old Lera. She has pathology in the development of the right shin bones. Requires staged surgical treatment.

Paley Institute, St. Mary's Medical Center

  • $1.00

Lera is our third child. My pregnancy went well, the doctors didn’t find any abnormalities. So it was a real blow for me, when I was told, after the delivery, that my daughter has a congenital deformity – her right leg had not formed properly, the double joint in her knee looked like a large growth, and virtually right under it was an inverted foot. Immediately after we were discharged, we took my daughter to the Central Research Institute of Traumatology and Orthopedics named after N.N. Priorov in Moscow. They tried to help us: for three months they applied a plaster cast to her leg, but without any result. Ultimately, the doctors recommended we amputate the leg and make prosthesis. We couldn’t accept this recommendation, and found a hospital in Israel, where doctors created a single shin for Lera, connecting the tibia and fibula. Then we went to a hospital in Germany. In two operations, German doctors were able to remove the extra knee joint and thighbone. They made a special orthoprosthesis. Thanks to that Lera was able to walk. Private benefactors helped us pay for all of the medical treatment overseas. While we were still under the care of doctors in Germany, I began to correspond with Dr. Dror Paley of St. Mary's Hospital in West Palm Beach, Florida, United States. He has long been successfully operating on children with such pathologies. The doctor looked at my daughter’s medical records and said that in three operations he will be able to reconstruct her leg. The treatment will take six months. But we just cannot afford it. We still have two daughters, fourteen and eight years of age, only my husband works. Please help us!

Anna Gaivoronskaya,

Orthopedic surgeon, Dr. Dror Paley of St. Mary’s Hospital in West Palm Beach, Florida says: "Valeria was born with ectromelia (significant underdevelopment) of the right shin bone. The girl has already had operations in Germany and Israel. But that only achieved a cosmetic effect; the right leg is completely non-functional. We are ready to reconstruct Valeria’s leg in three phases over six months.

First we will put a special orthopedic device called an external fixator on the leg, which, over the course of three months, will lengthen it with the help of electromagnetic radiation. The goal is to correct the deformation of the knee and the foot, and to lengthen the shin. In the second phase, we will operate on the muscles and implant special prosthetics in the knee and ankle joints for mobility. In the third phase, we will remove the device, protecting the fibula from fractures with a special bracket. For a month after that, Valeria will be in a cast. I hope that after undergoing this treatment Valeria will be able to walk, run, and lead a normal life."

The cost of Lera's surgeries is $527,438. We are happy to report that Rusfond in Moscow has raised the entire amount needed. However, an additional $24,000 is required for her and her mother's flights, accommodations, food, local transportation, and other associated expenses for the duration of their stay in the USA, which can be between six and twelve months.

If you want to help Lera please don't let the cost stop you. Your donation in any amount will be gratefully accepted. You can contribute to Russian American Children's Foundation using a Credit Card, Apple Pay, PayPal, or by sending a check made payable to:

Russian American Children's Foundation 
420 Lexington Avenue, Suite 300 
New York, NY 10170

Thank you! All donations in excess of what is needed for Lera will help other children in need of orthopedic surgery. 


All of the funds necessary for Lera's care have been raised.

Lera was successfully operated at St. Mary’s hospital in West Palm Beach, Florida.

As a result of the operation, her knee joint was brought back to the proper position and fixed in place with a spoke. Lera is now back at home and even attending nursery school. A year from now the girl is expected back at the hospital for the next treatment stage.