Dominican toddler Joel de la Rosa is surrounded by people wanting to improved his quality of life, including Dr. Alejandro Berenstein, who on Tuesday performed a modern procedure on the boy to correct a malformation of his face.

De la Rosa was flown in from the Dominican Republic by the Healing the Children organization, to be treated for a malformation that causes a swelling on one side of his face due to the retention of lymphatic fluid.

Healing the Children, which offers kids from all over the world access to medical treatment, found no hospital that could treat the 2-year-old's condition until it came upon the Vascular Birthmark Institute at St. Luke's-Roosevelt Hospital in New York, directed by the Mexican Dr. Alejandro Berenstein.

"We have a system of defense in the body, which is the lymphatic system. For reasons we don't understand, the child has a collection of lymphatic fluid on the left side of his face and below his chin which doesn't drain in a normal way and forms cysts," Berenstein told Efe.

Berenstein, a pioneer in the use of minimally invasive procedures to treat conditions related to the vascular system in the brain, head, face and spinal column, performed the procedure using a modern ultrasound and X-ray system as a guide.

The procedure applied Tuesday was the first of about four that the little boy will need before returning to his country six months from now, but the doctor warned that the problem could recur.

He also told Efe that he has trained personnel in the Dominican Republic who could take over treatment of the boy, whose mother Ramona Rosado is waiting for his return.

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