SHE cheated death twice but thanks to the Sydney Adventist Hospital Operation Open Heart team life she is living a normal life after two operations.
Twenty-four-year-old Rizwan Nasolikoviti said she was diagnosed with rheumatic fever since she was one years old and has been in and out of the Colonial War Memorial Hospital.
"The hospital was like my second home because I would get any infection that came around and have to be admitted to be treated and such was life," she said.
She said she continued her education at Vatuwaqa Primary School before moving to Latter Day Saints Technical College for her secondary education.
Ms Nasolikoviti said sometimes she had to be admitted during the school term but it did not deter her from continuing and successfully completing her secondary education.
"I had two blackouts while still in school where my body was just so weak and I nearly died but I managed to fight all this and thanks to the operations that were done on me.
"The last time I collapsed was in 2000 and this was before I left for surgery in Australia on one of my heart valves and there was never ending vomiting, dizziness and short of breath but it all stopped after this operation," she said.
She said her mother Latileta Likusalala accompanied her for her surgery in Australia in 2000 and they stayed for a month before returning home.
She added that after a while she started experiencing the same symptoms of vomiting, dizziness and short of breath and when she came for her medical examination, she was told she needed another operation.
Rizwan said her second heart valve was operated on last year and it was very successful.
She says she now she is able to do a lot of things she could not to before and is very thankful to the team. She said the operations were very costly and they were lucky and privileged to be operated on by the team.
"Now I just stay home and my family wants me to look after my health. I have six brother and sisters and I am the youngest," she said.