Andrea's Angel: Part I
A Chappaqua plastic surgeon donated his time and expertise to make a girl's dream of having two functioning ears a reality.Andrea Kuklewski, 7, was born with one ear, making her practically deaf and physically deformed. "I was thinking everyone's ears were normal except me and I felt scared and embarrassed," Kuklewski said. "This boy said, 'your ear looks ugly,' and I felt bad. I was crying."
Andrea's mother, Lourdes Kuklewski, struggled to find a doctor to treat the condition known as microtia, which one in 10,000 children is born with. She said the only problem with having the surgery was the $50,000 price tag that her insurance refused to pay. She turned to Dr. Anthony Sclafani, who agreed to treat the girl for free.
"For me, it was like winning the lottery. It's a feeling you don't expect at all," the single, working mother said.
Sclafani started the three-part surgery, which took several months to complete, by harvesting cartilage and bone from Kuklewski's ribs. A few months later, Sclafani and his team worked to re-form the rest of the girl's ear.
Tuesday, News 12 Westchester will have more on the final surgery and the end result.