Friday, April 1, 2011

Medical Miracles

Read about a girl who survived months without a heart

Medical Miracles
A man who recently received the first full face transplant in the U.S. is the latest case of people who defy the odds by overcoming life-threatening illnesses and injuries. Read about a girl who survived months without a heart, a brain surgery survivor who went on to achieve amazing athletic feats, and other tales of medical miracles.

Zheng Cao
Mezzo soprano Zheng Cao (hear her sing) was given six months to live back in 2009. What was the diagnosis? The San Francisco-based opera singer underwent a successful surgery (and received this drug) that eradicated all of the deadly tumors that plagued her. Her medical nightmare had a storybook ending.

Tracy Hermanstorfer
This Colorado mom died while giving birth on Christmas Eve 2009. What happened? When doctors rushed to continue delivering the baby, they found he wasn’t breathing. Shortly after the birth, Hermanstorfer inexplicably returned to life and, with help from medical staff, so did the baby.
Macie Hope McCartney
When her mother was about six months’ pregnant, doctors (at this hospital) had to remove 80 percent of baby Macie’s body from the womb to conduct prenatal surgery. Why was it necessary? She was then returned inside her mother and the healthy baby was born “again” 10 weeks later.

Rae Kupferschmidt
In 2008, doctors declared this 65-year-old woman brain-dead, removed her from life support and sent her home (where?) to live out her final days. What was her diagnosis? Shortly after returning home, the comatose mother of two showed signs of recovery, baffling both family and doctors.
D’Zhana Simmons
In 2008, this 14-year-old South Carolinian received an artificial heart that functioned in the absence of a real one (why?). Her case stood out because of her age and the sheer length of time during which she had no actual heart. How long was it?

Shannon Malloy
A 2007 car accident separated Malloy’s skull from her spine (the technical term). What happened? The Nebraska woman was saved with head and neck screws that formed a “stabilizing halo.” What did her doc say?
Alcides Moreno
Moreno and his brother were washing apartment building windows in 2007, when both fell (how many stories?). Only 27-year-old Moreno survived. After transfusions and operations (where?), he was able to speak his first words weeks later, on Christmas Day. What did he say?

Diane Van Deren
In 1997, Van Deren underwent a lobectomy to help cure a serious health problem (more about it). The brain surgery left her with major drawbacks, but also enabled her achieve great athletic success.
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