Dedicated physical therapist helps limb-lengthening patients meet their mobility goals

Dayle Federico, Physical Therapist, The Paley Institute at St. Mary’s Medical Center

DAYLA
Dayle Federico has worked as a physical therapist for nearly 20 years, the last three of which have been dedicated to The Paley Institute at St. Mary’s Medical Center and Palm Beach Children’s Hospital. Patients travel from all over the world to consult with Dr. Dror Paley for the various limb lengthening and deformity correction procedures he has developed.

 “Working at the Paley Institute has been a huge honor and privilege because I’ve been able to witness miracles on a daily basis,” expresses Dayle. “Most of our patients are told that amputation is their only option, therefore they are extremely grateful and optimistic about what their futures can hold after undergoing one of Dr. Paley’s procedures.”

One patient in particular holds a special place in Dayle’s heart: 2-year-old Briella Angsomwine. Briella was born with tibial hemimilia in her right leg, which affects about one in 1 million infants. As a result, numerous specialists told her family that not only would she be unable to walk, but that her best option was amputation. Not satisfied with this diagnosis, Briella’s family turned to the Paley Institute at St. Mary’s Medical Center and Palm Beach Children’s Hospital.

Following two surgeries with Dr. Paley, Briella attended physical therapy sessions with Dayle five times a week. During therapy, Dayle worked to strengthen Briella’s mobility by having her roll, sit and scoot along the floor to slowly build up to walking. She also works with Briella to strengthen her legs and stretch her muscles to accommodate for the severe deformity correction. Dayle has also advised Briella’s parents on how they can work as a team to help their daughter improve outside of her scheduled therapy visits.

“In less than six months, Briella has made amazing progress and can now stand, walk and even dance with the help of a walker,” she shares. “Her determination and strong character make me believe that she’ll soon be walking on her own and exceeding everyone’s expectations.”

To read more about Briella's story, click here