Patient stories

  1. Morgan Tyner

    Morgan Tyner: Overcoming Brain Cancer

    In the fall of 1990, Morgan Tyner experienced a moment that would change his life forever. While at work, Morgan, a newly practicing dentist, suffered a seizure. After undergoing many tests over the course of several days, he received a very serious and life threatening diagnosis – anaplastic astrocytoma – an aggressive and fast growing [...]

  2. Josh Johnson

    Teen back in action after neurosurgery for spinal cord tumor

    In early 2009, Josh Johnson's parents thought their 14-year-old's back was likely sore from a few falls he'd taken while snowboarding competitively. They live in Afton, Minn. and Josh spends his winters snowboarding and his summers wakeboarding. However, after a couple months of complaining, they knew it must be something more. Josh couldn't even bend over [...]

  3. Overcoming Epilepsy

      My name is Rachel Skaug, formerly Rachel Kaalberg, and I used to have seizures as a child. My seizures started in 1988, when I was just at 4 months old and lasted until I was 10 years old in 1998. I am from Madison, WI but much of my testing happened at the Mayo [...]

  4. Nick

    From Wheelchair to Rock-Climbing in 3 weeks!

    Having gone to several doctors elsewhere without receiving answers, this previously athletic student, Nick, and his mom, Becky, arrived to Mayo Clinic. They were exhausted. Nick was bundled up in many layers and in a wheelchair. Five minutes into his first appointment, Dr. Phil Fischer diagnosed Nick with POTS and Autonomic Dysfunction. He started the three-week Pediatric Pain [...]

  5. Mark McNeary

    Mark McNeary: "A miracle of a different sort"

    For Mark McNeary, a retired music industry executive, his miracle story began shortly after finishing Saturday morning chores at his ranch in Kingman, Ariz. Sudden, searing head pain and throat problems made it clear that he needed immediate medical attention. His wife, Julie, drove him 30 miles to the nearest emergency room at Kingman Regional [...]

  6. "Hopeful life" after surgery to remove rare brain tumor

    When 7-year-old Jacob Harpel was diagnosed with a rare brain tumor, doctors told his parents, Koreen and Paul, that it was most likely noncancerous (benign) and slow-growing and recommended a wait-and-see approach to treatment. But with the tumor causing seizures and dizzy spells, the Harpels decided to seek a second opinion. After extensive testing, a [...]

  7. Neuromyelitis Optica Treatment at Mayo Clinic Restores Grace Jeffers’ Sight

    In 2009, Grace Jeffers of Chicago was wheelchair-bound, having severe back pain and losing control of the left side of her body. She had been diagnosed with multiple sclerosis, but when a blood test sent to Mayo Clinic in December showed that Jeffers actually suffered from neuromyelitis optica (NMO), her physician referred her to Mayo [...]

  8. Erica Egge

    Epilepsy, Brain Surgery and then, Seizure-Free

    We scurried like mice across the street under the cover of darkness, hugging the side of the St. Mary building when we reached it to block the wind as it gusted at 22 below zero. The light from the entrance door called like a beacon, and when we reached it all I could do was [...]

  9. Wayne Puckett

    Seeing the Light Helps Parkinsonism Patient Walk

    It began with a headache in 2007. That was followed by weakness on his left side, a slight slurring of his speech and tremors. Doctors thought Wayne Puckett, then 42 and a father of five, had suffered a stroke. But over the next two years, the headaches persisted. Complicated migraine was the new diagnosis. But [...]

  10. Jacob Harpel's Thanksgiving Story

    Eight-year-old Jacob Harpel from Glencoe, Minn., was diagnosed with a plum-sized brain tumor the day before Thanksgiving last year. He had aggressive brain surgery at Mayo Clinic in August to remove the tumor; with the surgery he had a 50% chance of losing his peripheral vision on one side and a 50% chance of speech [...]

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