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Steppin' It Up
When you look at 13-year-old Paige, you would never guess that she’s already been through three heart surgeries and extensive follow-up care. At just a few days old, Paige was diagnosed with hypoplastic left heart syndrome, in which several structures in the heart’s left side form incorrectly. Paige soon had the first of several surgeries at Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin to correct her heart defect. Now, many years later, Paige (pictured at right with exercise physiologist Michael Danduran) appears to be the same as any other 13-year-old. But after such significant medical intervention, she and her parents had worried that she couldn’t be as active as other kids her age.
That’s where our Steppin’ It Up clinic comes in. Through this program, Paige followed a personalized combination of medically supervised physical activity, received tailored education and participated in fun group activities and mentoring. This approach has already shown positive results for our heart patients, who need physical activity to stay healthy. Participants like Paige will increase endurance, regain strength and reduce future health risks as they get motivated to stay active for the rest of their lives.
We captured Paige’s last visit to the Steppin’ It Up clinic before graduating from the program. She has enjoyed meeting other heart patients and has learned to be comfortable with physical activity alongside other kids with similar conditions facing the same challenges.
The Steppin’ It Up clinic is one example of the many support services we provide to kids and families that are made possible thanks to the generosity of our donors. The physical rehabilitation services offered within this program are completely funded by people like you. Support like yours enables us to continually move the needle in research, clinical care and outreach so that the kids we treat today thrive and reach their fullest potential.
Help us help kids like Paige by donating today!
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