Patient stories

  1. An Active Life Restored, Thanks to Regenerative Medicine

    For years, Rick Amatuzio lived with severe back pain that kept him from the active life he'd always savored. But advanced diagnostic tests and regenerative medicine therapy at Mayo Clinic ultimately led to a complete recovery. Now Rick once again can play sports and enjoy the outdoors free from pain. A typical weekend for Rick [...]

  2. Joyriding Once More

    When chronic hip pain drove Brenda Brault to seek medical care, the long-distance runner and triathlete assumed her high-level athletic pursuits were over. Rather than limiting her abilities, however, surgery allowed Brenda's training to keep moving forward. For more than 30 years, Brenda Brault lived with pain. Beginning in high school, when discomfort from a [...]

  3. Winning Against All Odds

    Andy Steinfeldt discovered his love of running late in life. When a series of medical conditions and complications threatened his newfound hobby, he refused to accept a future where he wasn't able to compete. As a high schooler, Andy Steinfeldt wasn't an athlete. He never won a ribbon or medal for anything fitness related. But [...]

  4. Improving Lives With Creativity and Kindness

    As a child, when Jim Rogotzke wanted a toy or device that didn't exist, he'd make it. Today the master electrician has turned that talent toward designing and developing devices to help patients. In the heart of rural Minnesota at Mayo Clinic Health System in Springfield, when a specialty object needs to be made, master [...]

  5. Diagnosis and Treatment for a Mysterious Illness Turn Despair Into Hope

    With unexplained symptoms worsening daily, Elise Athas' health was spiraling downward quickly until she came to Mayo Clinic and discovered a program that helped her cope, recover and heal. When Elise Athas arrived at Mayo Clinic in November 2017, she was a shell of her old self. Gaunt and weak, the former runner needed a [...]

  6. Right-Handed Once More, Thanks to Unique Orthopedic Surgery

    Craig Cretsinger had accepted the fact that he'd never be able to use his right hand ? until he learned about a specialized hand surgery at Mayo Clinic. For 45 years, Craig Cretsinger lived without the use of his right hand. It was the result of a spinal cord injury he'd suffered decades earlier. The [...]

  7. Mastectomy Can't Keep Marianne Huebner Out of Competitive Weightlifting

    When she was diagnosed with breast cancer, Marianne Huebner feared her days of competitive weightlifting were over. Her care team at Mayo Clinic had other ideas. Marianne Huebner, Ph.D., was just a few months into trying the sport of weightlifting when she discovered a small lump on one of her breasts during a self-exam. "I [...]

  8. Astounding Recovery for an 8-Year-Old Boy Shot by an Arrow

    It?s a story that plays out like a Hollywood movie. A young boy is accidentally struck by an arrow and narrowly escapes death. The arrow pierces the 8-year-old?s backbone and splits his spinal cord. He?s paralyzed from the waist down, and his doctors fear he?ll never walk again. But remarkably, the story has a happy [...]

  9. Walking Easy Again After Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery

    After a 37-year career at a petroleum company, Dan Hofferber was looking forward to retirement. But in 2014, Dan started having trouble with one of his legs. The muscle in his left thigh would tighten up, causing unbearable pain that made it hard to walk. ?I was used to walking a mile or two, and [...]

  10. Refusing to Give Up After Devastating Accident, A Farmer Finds Help and Healing at Mayo Clinic

    When Gene Franke left his farm in rural Hayfield, Minnesota, driving a semi-trailer truck loaded with hay and bound for Oklahoma, he never imagined the return leg of his journey would be as a passenger in an air ambulance jet. But in September 2011, that?s exactly what happened. A serious accident left Gene paralyzed and [...]

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