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“Your daughter needs open heart surgery.”

For Basil and Susan Mourtos, these words were the start of their worst nightmare become reality.

It was 2017. Their daughter Siana was a normal four-year-old. She enjoyed playing with her dog, racing around on her scooter and cuddling with her mum and dad.

She also had a 2cm-wide hole in her heart.

It started simply. Siana had caught a cold, and during a routine check-up, the doctor heard something in Siana’s heart that prodded her to further investigate. Even then, Basil didn’t think anything of it. After all, the heart murmur the doctor had observed was quite common in many people.

It was only after an ultrasound months later that he heard those life-changing words:

Your daughter needs open heart surgery.”

Basil’s first reaction was shock – there had been no symptoms, and Siana outwardly appeared healthy. But it was true. Within a few weeks, Siana underwent an operation to patch the hole in her heart.


Two months after the operation, Siana was well on the way to recovery and back to playing on swings and learning to ride her bike.

Basil gratefully says, “Thanks to the advances of heart research and all the scientists, Siana is now able to have a full and healthy life.”

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