April 5th, 2017
The surgical teams assembled to operate on Mayo Clinic's most complex patients lately have begun to consist of more than living, breathing members. The new recruits are usually small enough to hold in your hand, and they don't say a word. But the information conveyed by these 3D anatomical printed models is helping surgeons plan and navigate the trickiest of procedures.
In late 2016, Mayo Clinic thoracic surgeon Mark Allen, M.D. was part of a surgical team that used a 3D printed model to help them prepare to remove a rare, intrusive pancoast tumor. The tumor had grown in the chest of a patient, between his ribs and among the vessels just above his lungs.
September 10th, 2016
Travis McGinnis was just 30 years old when an insidious cancer was discovered in his brain. It had been growing there for some time, he says — his physicians estimated between five and 10 years. Had the stage-three oligoastrocytoma not been detected when it was, Travis would have likely lost his life. As it happened, thanks to care and treatment provided by neurologists and neurosurgeons at Mayo Clinic’s Rochester campus, the only solid thing the father of three lost to the cancer was a fist-sized piece of his brain.
While having cancer was something he never wanted, Travis says the experience gave him insights and gifts he would not have otherwise realized: deep appreciation for his family and friends, gratitude for the present, and faith in strangers who generously supported him.
“Sometimes I’ll sit and think about everything I’ve been through, and it moves me to tears,” Travis says. “I’m alive and better for it. I wish I never would’ve had to go through it, but at least it wasn’t for nothing.” Read the rest of this entry »
June 25th, 2016
For two weeks, 14-year-old Jackson Fisher was plagued by headaches, double-vision, nausea and weight loss. His parents, Michelle and Patrick Fisher, weren’t sure what was wrong. But when Jackson came home one evening completely exhausted after lacrosse practice, they decided it was time to find out what was going on. The next day, they took Jackson to the emergency room.
What doctors found during that ER visit triggered a series of events the Fishers never could have anticipated and that eventually led the family to Mayo Clinic’s Proton Beam Therapy Program, where Jackson received treatment for a brain tumor.
“Every single person we’ve met at Mayo Clinic has been amazing, and we feel like we were meant to meet them,” says Michelle. “His doctors told us they were going to fight for Jackson. They’ve been forthcoming and explained things simply and honestly. I never second guessed his care. Being at Mayo Clinic has been the most positive experience of our lives.” Read the rest of this entry »
January 20th, 2016
Michael Slag holds in his hands a tumor – or rather a 3-D print of the actual tumor that is growing at the top of his right lung. Doctors are using the 3-D printed model to aid them in planning the complex surgery to remove Michael’s tumor.
Mayo Clinic doctors diagnosed Michael with a rare form of lung cancer known as Pancoast tumor, a condition so rare that Mayo Clinic has only seen 60 cases in the past 20 years. Read the rest of this entry »
September 26th, 2013
Sisters Amber and Sabrina Starke wear matching necklaces and rings as a reminder of their commitment to each other and to keep fighting the fight against leukemia.
After graduating from high school, Amber started college in May 2003. She passed out at work one day and was taken to her local emergency department. A CT scan revealed a tumor the size of a grapefruit between her heart and lung. The tumor was putting pressure on her heart, which caused her to collapse at work. Her doctors then performed a biopsy on the tumor, which showed Hodgkin's lymphoma. After completing six months of chemotherapy and four weeks of radiation, Amber was considered to be in remission. She then went back to work and lived a normal life, until about 10 years later.