The Kuzmina family fled Ukraine and settled in South Carolina in search of medical care for their 2-year-old daughter, Zlata, whom they feared was completely deaf. After meeting with Dr. Teddy McRackan, a surgeon and cochlear implant specialist, the family received the gift of sound. Zlata was confirmed to be deaf in her left ear but was responding to noise in her right ear at very loud levels. In March, McRackan and his team at the Medical University of South Carolina surgically placed a cochlear implant in Zlata's ear. The implant stimulates the auditory nerve, which sends signals to the brain and allows the child to hear sound in her right ear. The family expressed gratitude to the community and the medical team that helped them.
Photo Credit: Denisse Leon