Minnesota patient stories

  1. Stopping the Seizures

    After brain surgery at Mayo Clinic, Xander Torres is a healthy, happy kid "My hand is wiggly." When 4-year-old Xander Torres said these words to his mother, Sarah, she had no idea the long journey they would begin. "To be honest, I didn't think much about it at first," she says. Several weeks went by [...]

  2. This Selfie Brought to You by Colon Cancer Screening

    Twelve years after her diagnosis, Jane Jacobs knows the value of finding and treating colon cancer early and is participating in Fight Colorectal Cancer's #StrongArmSelfie campaign. Jane Jacobs understands the squeamishness some people have as they consider going through tests to check for colon cancer. "No one wants to think about or talk about their [...]

  3. Gratitude, and the Voice of Experience

    Mark Pearce jokes that, "If something's going to happen, it's going to happen to me." That sentiment isn't hard to understand in someone who has had eight joint replacements (knees, hips and shoulders – some more than once), has been cardioverted 18 times to restore normal heart rhythm, and had surgery for a brain tumor. [...]

  4. Breaking Away From Pain With the Help of 'The Scrambler'

    Participating in a clinical trial gave Karen Safranek a solution to her decade-long struggle with peripheral neuropathy  Karen Safranek didn't take a worry-free step for 10 years. Severe peripheral neuropathy — a side effect of breast cancer treatment she received in 2002 — left her with constant burning, tingling, numbness and pain in both her [...]

  5. An Extension of the Heart

    Marla Burkhart’s heart was functioning at roughly 30 percent when she was rushed to the hospital for an emergency cesarean section eight weeks before the due date of her first child. After she and her husband had chosen a name for their child, she placed her faith in her heart and the support of a [...]

  6. From ‘Pick a Plot’ to Watching His Son Graduate

    Read time: 4 minutes Written by Ron Christian “Pick a plot and get your papers in order, you’ll be dead in a month.” That’s what the local neurosurgeon said. Those words served as my wake-up call. While my wife wept, I became angry. We had three very young children, and I was determined to see [...]

  7. An Answer to Chronic Pain Through Community

    Read time: 7 minutes Kylee Swensrud doesn’t want to talk about the bad stuff. About how the chronic back pain she’s been living with for the past few years caused emotional distress and drove a wedge between her parents, or the weight it placed on her older sister over concern for her. And she especially [...]

  8. Learning a New Way to Live, With Pain

    Look at Carl White today and you see a busy, content family man. A husband and father of two, Carl recently completed his bachelor's degree and now is pursuing a master's in social work. When he's not in school or studying, you'll likely find him either at his job as a health unit coordinator at [...]

  9. Josh Russell Faces His Toughest Battle

    Josh Russell spent four years in the U.S. Marine Corps. But he says his toughest battle took place years after he left the military. In early 2011, Josh noticed a bump in his stomach around his navel. He thought the bump was a hernia, and his doctor initially agreed. Josh was scheduled for surgery, but [...]

  10. Patient Attributes Health to Excellent Care, A Generous Donor, and a Terrible Spider Bite

    You never know how an experience – even a negative experience – can shape the rest of your life. Decades ago, when Jane Applen-Anderson came to Mayo Clinic Hospital, Methodist Campus, in Rochester with her leg swollen to three times its usual size, she wasn’t thinking about what good could come out of it. She [...]

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