Impact of Your Support

Mia Gurevitz was a very active toddler, so when her mom, Lisa, noticed that Mia wasn’t putting on weight like other kids her age, she attributed it to Mia’s constant energy. A routine pediatric exam, however, showed that Mia had fallen off the growth charts, something doctors call ‘failure to thrive.’ The doctor recommended Mia see a specialist in Gastroenterology (GI ).

An exam by the GI specialist and, following that, a geneticist, turned up nothing. The next step was to take Mia to a neurologist for an MRI. When the doctor called Lisa with the results, her parents were alarmed to hear that the scan indicated a mass in their daughter’s brain. Mia was quickly scheduled for a second MRI, which confirmed the first findings.

The family met with a neurosurgeon, who recommended exploratory surgery to see what he could find. Uncomfortable with such a drastic first step, the family sought a second opinion at Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago.

“When we met the surgeon at Lurie Children’s, all of our worry fell away,” says Lisa. The doctor suggested a less invasive first step involving a biopsy. During the procedure, doctors discovered an astrocytoma, a slow growing tumor. In Mia’s case, the tumor had become entwined with her pituitary gland and the effect was stunting her growth. “When they told me it was benign, I remember thinking, ‘Does it even matter?’” says Lisa. “But you learn to take the positive out of the negative.”

Doctors put Mia on a year-long regimen of chemotherapy to stabilize the tumor’s growth. Along with the pituitary astrocytoma, a spinal MRI showed that she had several small lesions on her spine, which is not uncommon for this condition.

Three months into her treatment, a follow up MRI shows that Mia’s growths are stable.

Her family is optimistic. “She’s small,” says Lisa, “but she’s mighty.”

Your fundraising efforts will make a difference in a child's life

Treasure Chest

A gift of $100 can ensure that the Treasure Chest has gifts and prizes to brighten the day for a sick child or to help celebrate a birthday or holiday during a hospital stay.

Comfort for the Tiniest Babies

Your gift of $450 can provide a Snoedel, Snugabunny Swing, Dandy Tub and other comfort items needed for an infant's stay in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit.

Heartlight Bereavement Program

Your gift of $850 can establish and maintain bereavement support for one family for the duration of their care at the hospital. It remains one of the few such family support programs in the Chicago area.

Creative Arts Program

The Creative Arts Community Partnerships Program is bridging the connection between medicine and the healing power of art. Your gift of $1,000 can provide images of nature to several family consultation rooms in the hospital.

Patient Emergency Fund

Your gift of $2,500 can cover one month of transportation expenses to and from the hospital for patient families requesting assistance.

Epilepsy Education and Outreach Program

A gift of $5,000 can provide books, supplies and transportation costs for the Epilepsy Education and Outreach program.

Beads of Courage

A gift of $10,000 can provide six months of funding for the Beads of Courage program, which helps children mark milestones of their cancer treatment using beads.

Find out more

There are many ways to make a difference. To learn more, call 312.227.7500 or visit

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Impact Of Your Support

Learn how your support helps to improve or save the lives of kids like Mia Gurevitz.