Victoria was born in Venezuela with a congenital heart defect, but was asymptomatic until she was 10 years old. Her cardiologist at the time said she needed urgent surgery, but everything did not go as planned. A few months later, after Victoria’s health had been steadily deteriorating, her mom resorted to finding a hospital outside of the country to treat Victoria, and found Nicklaus Children’s Hospital.
With the help of the Global Health department, Victoria came to Miami and was seen by the late Dr. Richard Zakheim, who immediately called for her to be admitted. Victoria has undergone nine procedures at Nicklaus Children’s, including four open-heart surgeries with Dr. Robert Hannan. At first she would travel back and forth between Venezuela and Miami, but after a few years of that, Dr. Zakheim told Victoria and her mom that the best option for her health would be for them to stay in Florida.
Today, Victoria is 18 years old and looking forward to a bright future thanks to the care she received at Nicklaus Children’s Hospital. Watch her Patient of the Month video and please feel free to share Victoria’s incredible story with your donors and contacts.