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With no cure available, a Mayo patient finds comfort in a reunion with a former teacher whose words and encouragement had a lasting impact on his life. With some help from his Mayo physician. Tim Ruettiger, a gym teacher and wrestling coach in New Lennox, Ill., had no idea what a lasting impression he had made on one of his students, Ron Krasneck. In 1982, Krasneck was 14 years old when he first met Ruettiger, known as Coach Rudy. Krasneck was slightly built, standing just 4 feet, 6 inches tall. Born with a rare genetic condition linked to cancer, the teenager had undergone multiple orthopedic surgeries to treat bone cancer. But Coach Rudy treated Krasneck just like the rest of the students. Thirty years later, Mayo's Horacio Asbun, M.D., a surgeon at Mayo Clinic in Florida, learned about Coach Rudy's impact during a conversation back in December 2012, after Krasneck learned that surgery couldn’t cure his advanced gall bladder and liver cancer. “I couldn’t do anything for him,” says Dr. Asbun, who knew much of Krasneck’s medical journey. Diagnosed as a toddler, his disease ramped up in his late teens. At age 46, Krasneck had survived nine episodes of bone cancer, amputations of a hand and wrist, partial removal of a shoulder/scapula and removal and rebuilding of C2 and C3 vertebrae. He walked with a prosthetic leg, though it was hardly noticeable. He'd had more than 35 major surgeries.
It's a rare teenager who puts in overtime. Kelsey O'Leary is that teen. At age 12, Kelsey was diagnosed with scoliosis and fitted with a brace by Mayo Clinic physicians. The Rochester, Minn., girl wore the brace day and night — logging more than the recommended hours — for three years. Kelsey, now 17, and her parents, Amaria Najem O'Leary and Patrick O'Leary, credit her perseverance with a remarkable outcome. After three years of bracing, the curvature of Kelsey's spine was improved — an unusual result for a treatment that is designed to keep spinal curvature from worsening. "I was really surprised and happy about that," says Kelsey, a theater and arts aficionado. "I was always told that bracing doesn't cure scoliosis, but it did actually improve the curvature of my spine, which is very rare."
[Editor's Note: Following is an article by Mary I. O'Connor, M.D., chair of the Department of Orthopedics at Mayo Clinic in Florida, sharing her perspective on how gender affects the care of women today.] Should a woman have a female doctor? As a woman and an orthopedic surgeon, I am sometimes asked that question. While some women may be more comfortable discussing intimate matters related to sexual and reproductive health with a woman physician, a general assumption is that the care provided to patients by physicians is not influenced by gender. Unfortunately, data suggests that women do not always receive the same care as men. This is not a simple issue. There are many factors that influence the patient-physician interaction and relationship. But the factor that may be the most powerful may be one we know surprisingly little about in the health care setting: unconscious bias. Unconscious bias may be the reason women receive fewer kidney transplants and heart surgeries. It may be so powerful that it even influences the care provided to children. A 2011 study by Butani and Perez showed girls are 22 percent less likely to be placed on a kidney transplant list than boys. Because an earlier transplant equates to better health, this gender disparity likely impacts the long-term outcome of these young women.
............................................................................................................................................................. After Mehta casting at Mayo Clinic, 3-year-old Sofía Egües saw the curvature of her spine reduced from 60 to 35 degrees and has taken steps ...
Harper Blommers could not touch her head because of an injury suffered at birth. After surgery at Mayo, she is now happily dancing like her sister.
A rare cancer cost Bob Anderson his hip and leg. Willpower and rehabilitation specialists at Mayo Clinic helped him keep his active lifestyle.
My name is Samantha Blythe, and the Mayo Clinic in Minnesota is a five-star medical facility in my book. Out of all the specialty clinics and hospitals that I’ve been to in my childhood and adult years, none of them match up to the quality of care that the Mayo Clinic in Minnesota gives to their patients. I had been there for the hip dysplasia in my right hip in 2000, and Dr. Dan Berry, who is the best hip specialist who works with Dr. Trousdale, decided to do the hip replacement surgery. I cried happy tears when he looked at me, and said, “Can you stay longer?”
Most parents don't like to see their child up in arms, but for Taylor Beauseau's parents, that's a beautiful thing
Many years ago, I injured my right wrist while working for a previous employer. At the time, I was told that I had a small cartilage tear. I wore a splint for a couple of months, and I had a cortisone injection. I didn’t have any additional problems with the wrist until about a year and a half ago. I began to notice pain again in the same area that had bothered me when I initially injured my wrist. I sought treatment locally in Indiana, but I was not completely comfortable with the diagnosis that my local physician gave me. I was planning an upcoming trip to the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN, and I decided to explore my options at the Mayo Clinic.
Anistasia Smith and her mother, Bridgette Grunewald, give a big thumbs-up to Brian Carlsen, M.D., and the team at Mayo Clinic who cared for the then 4-year-old in February 2011. Anistasia’s left thumb had been severed in a recliner chair. “Anistasia was asleep, cuddling on her grandma’s chest. When the recliner was brought to an upright position, her thumb was caught in the chair’s mechanism and cut off,” says Grunewald. “My mother put pressure on Anistasia’s hand to control the bleeding and called 911.” First responders retrieved the thumb and used a bag of frozen vegetables from the family’s freezer to keep it cold and increase the likelihood of the tissue surviving.
My story begins in 1998. At the age of 32 I was diagnosed with bilateral hip dysplasia. Because I was a breech baby at birth the doctors at home had told me that this was probably the reason why I was having problems. I was having the most pain in my left hip. I first went to see Dr Ray Emerson at the Mason City Clinic in Mason City, Iowa. He took a hip xray and diagnosed me from that. I am an RN and was working at the hospital so being on my feet all day was somewhat of a task at times. He suggested to me that a cortisone shot may help alleviate some of the pain along with an anti-inflammatory. So I took him up on his advice and took the cortisone shot. After about a week the shot wore off and it was back to the pain again. The pain was not yet unbearable at this point and nothing that the anti-inflammatory medication couldn't control. I continued to work as an RN and was on my feet many hours a day.
This spring, Brooke Hayes traveled to the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival, taking in the music of Jimmy Buffett, Arcade Fire, The Strokes, Lauryn Hill and Better Than Ezra. The trip was remarkable for this previously well-traveled young woman from Ormond Beach, Fla. Hayes’ suitcases had been empty and idle because of her severe hip pain. Hayes had her hips replaced in two surgeries at Mayo Clinic in March and August 2010. Now, new hips in place, she’s making up for lost time.