Minnesota patient stories

  1. A Golden Dream

    After being diagnosed with cancer, Joan Hittner, along with her husband, David, created an organization to raise money to find a cure. Today, David and daughter Christine continue the work. In 2011, Joan and David Hittner opened a letter from the Mayo Clinic Department of Development. Inside was a request: Would they consider donating $25 [...]

  2. A Kidney Between Friends

    Todd Goldrick was living the dream. Good job. Loving wife. Two young, healthy kids. Weekends spent playing golf, softball, kayaking, hiking, running or just hanging around home with the family. But that changed suddenly in 2010, when he and his wife simply tried to buy some life insurance. He was just 28. "Mine came back [...]

  3. In a moment … a poem, and a vision of hope

    Sometimes the only way to respond to a thing of beauty is to pour your thoughts out onto the page. And that’s what Mayo Clinic patient Jerry O’Donnell, of Waterloo, Iowa, did after being moved, perhaps even changed, by experiencing the beauty of music in the atrium of the Gonda Building on Mayo’s Rochester campus. [...]

  4. A New Approach to a Difficult Cancer Diagnosis

    At age 39, Tom Peroulas was active and fit. Coaching and playing rugby, biking to work in downtown Chicago, and exercising daily kept him in good shape. So when he started noticing pain in his leg, groin and hip, he thought it was probably related to activity. He tried stretching and yoga. He rested it. [...]

  5. Boo Maddox

    Boo Maddox takes on H1N1, dialysis, and complications on his way to a successful kidney transplant

    A year ago, the Robert Maddox family from Boyce, La., would never have imagined attending the 50th Anniversary of Kidney Transplantation celebration event at Mayo Clinic this month. A year ago, their 9-year-old son Robert, who goes by the nickname "Boo," was struggling to survive, and a transplant seemed impossible. After a devastating bout of H1N1 (swine [...]

  6. Young girl becomes champion for scoliosis screening

    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 [...]

  7. Devi Chettiar

    After Bladder Cancer, this 19-Year-Old Girl gets a New Bladder

    In the fall of 2004, Devi Chettiar was a healthy, active college student. Living in the Twin Cities, Devi was a sophomore who enjoyed her studies at the University of Minnesota. She also actively participated in a dance company and liked spending time with friends. In November of that year, though, things changed. Devi started [...]

  8. Christina George

    Christina goes to the head of the class

    Christina George recently won an award for overall academic achievement in her kindergarten class. At the award ceremony, many in the crowd were in tears, including her parents, Paulette and Larry. Their emotion and surprise was to be expected. By the time the little girl was 4 years old, she had only ever said one [...]

  9. Mauricio Perez Olegaray and his wife

    Mexican man grateful for normal life after liver transplant

    When doctors in Mexico City diagnosed Mauricio Perez-Olegaray with liver cirrhosis, he thought the condition was the result of earlier alcohol consumption and a genetic predisposition. But at Mayo Clinic, in Rochester, Minn., doctors discovered instead the silent progress of hepatitis C. For the next six years, a team of Mayo Clinic specialists cared for [...]

  10. Cindy

    To Life (again) as a Two-Time Cancer Survivor

    I’m walking a fine line between jubilation and anxiety. As a two-time ovarian cancer survivor, I’m nearing the anniversary of my recurrence. Although I feel fine, this type of cancer isn’t the most accommodating. My nerves always manage to creep up on my dates with the ‘gists – in my case, the oncologist and gynecologist, which [...]

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