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Alina Bogdanova’s Road to Recovery from Acoustic Neuroma

I learned about my illness and my diagnosis quite by accident, when on the recommendation of a neurologist I underwent a head MRI. So, on May 8, 2014, after a second MRI scan of the brain, I was diagnosed with Acoustic Neuroma. It was a very serious diagnosis, which came as a shock to me. I immediately applied to the Kiev Institute of Otolaryngology, where I was told that they do not perform this kind of operation. I was all alone facing my problem.

However, I was not prepared to give up. I found information online about this kind of surgery being performed in Israel, and that same night, I sent requests to two Israeli medical centers: Sheba and Rambam.
I had never visited Israel and did not know that the weekend in Israel is Friday and Saturday. Nevertheless, at 9.30 am on Friday I got a call from the Sheba Medical Center. The medical consultant confirmed that these operations are successfully performed at Sheba.

I urged her to arrange my visit to the hospital as soon as possible and to make all the preparations needed for the surgery. I could not be away from home for a long time because my mother is 85 years old and she needs my care. The medical consultant was very efficient and prepared all the necessary documents, arranged a reservation for me at the hotel, and sent a car to meet me at the airport. This was very important for me, because I was flying alone, and was not feeling very well.

So on May 12th I was already in Israel, I was met, taken to the hospital, and placed in a hotel. I thank the medical case manager, who had responded to my letter immediately on her day off and managed to organize my arrival rapidly and efficiently.

On Tuesday morning, I went to the Global Patient Services Office and found out that I already had a designated coordinator – Janna Kalontarova. A few minutes later I met this beautiful, sweet, smiling woman and all my fears and nervousness simply disappeared. I realized that I was in good hands. Janna organized all the tests and consultations quickly and professionally while being sensitive and caring throughout the whole process!

Janna took me to see Dr. Uzi Nissim, who confirmed that stereotactic radiosurgery is indeed necessary. I agreed and asked the doctor to schedule my operation as soon as possible, since I had a return ticket to Kiev on May 22.

At this point, very intensive preparation for the surgery began. Orly, Dr. Uzi Nissim’s assistant, took the lead in the process, but Janna stayed available for me anytime I needed her help or advice. I underwent Stereotactic Radiosurgery on May 19, 2014, and I can confidently say that the success of this operation depended not on one person, but on a whole group of people who were highly professional.

I am immensely grateful to all the people who took part in my treatment at its various stages, for their professionalism, sensitivity, and humanity! Naturally, the most special feeling of gratitude goes to Dr. Uzi Nissim, Orly and Janna. Janna is my guardian angel! Thanks to her organization skills, within the ten days of my stay in Sheba I was able to complete the whole treatment: from tests and examination, through the surgery, and through to the postoperative period.

Three and a half years have passed since the operation. Now, I come to Israel for a checkup once a year, for an MRI and a consultation with Dr. Uzi Nissim. On my last visit, the doctor told me to come to the consultation once every two years.

Now I know for sure that Israel is the home of the best doctors in the world!
To all my relatives and friends I say: if you have a health problem, go to Israel to the Sheba Medical Center. They will help you there. Sheba is a place where the most highly professional and sensitive people are employed!

Alina's Recovery from Acoustic Neuroma
Janna Kalontarov
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