Sharing Mayo Clinic

Stories from patients, family, friends and Mayo Clinic staff

Hoyt Finnamore

Hoyt Finnamore (@hoytfinnamore)

Mayo Clinic Department of Public Affairs. Editor, Sharing Mayo Clinic and In the Loop. 

Activity by Hoyt Finnamore

Hoyt Finnamore

3 days ago by Hoyt Finnamore · View  

Experimental Nerve Graft Puts Former Green Beret Back on his Feet

Kevin Flike with his daughter, Lilah. Others might have panicked, but former U.S. Special Forces Engineer Kevin Flike kept his wits about him when he was shot in the abdomen during a firefight in Afghanistan four years ago. Through the worst pain of his life, the Green Beret pushed forward. He radioed his injury to teammates and began assessing the wound, which appeared mortal to his unit’s medic.

“I wanted to remain calm because I knew if I wasn’t, it was going to make the situation worse,” says Kevin, who, at 27, was one of the senior members in his unit. As it was, the situation was bad. The bullet tore through his lower abdomen, breaking his hip, damaging his colon, and ripping apart his left femoral nerve.  [...]

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Hoyt Finnamore

Thu, Aug 13 at 9:23am CDT by Hoyt Finnamore · View  

Marathoner and Ironman Michael Koetting Back in the Race After Donating Kidney

Michael Koetting continues to race after donating a kidney to someone on the transplant list.

 

As an endurance athlete who has completed six Ironman triathlons and more than two dozen marathons, Michael Koetting does not fear physical challenges. So when he learned he could use his good health to help a stranger in need, he never hesitated.  [...]

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Hoyt Finnamore

Wed, Aug 5 at 3:25pm CDT by Hoyt Finnamore · View  

Turning off the Tremors -- Deep Brain Stimulation Helps Patient Enjoy Little Things Again

Mary Daugherty is now able to enjoy the little things like flying a kite after a deep brain stimulation procedure to stop her tremor. Mary Daugherty just wanted to sit still. For nearly four decades, the 73-year-old experienced tremors in her hands, arms and head. In 2014, she decided to do something about it.

Mary’s journey began when she was in her mid-30s and started to notice a slight trembling in her upper extremities. “I thought I just got excited or nervous, scared or tired,” she says. “When others started remarking on my tremors, I decided to seek a medical explanation.”  [...]

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Hoyt Finnamore

Wed, Jul 29 at 4:02pm CDT by Hoyt Finnamore · View  

Surgery for Sunken Breastbone Reshapes Patient's Chest, Shapes Career Path

After her surgery, Rebecca Uhl helped Dr. Dawn Jaroszewski promote the procedure to repair excavatum. Written by Rebecca Uhl

“My chest just has a dent.” “Everyone is unique, and this is simply the way I was made.”

This is what I told myself growing up, being unaware that I had a congenital chest wall deformity known as pectus excavatum.

As a sophomore at Temple University in Philadelphia pursuing a marketing degree and with a passion for extreme sports, I didn’t have time to consider that something could be wrong. Then one day, a family member in the medical field urged me to research the impact the dent in my chest could be having on my heart. [...]

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Hoyt Finnamore

Hi, Natty. I'm sorry to hear that. Here's a link to information about Chiari malformation, including various treatment options:

http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/chiari-malformation/basics/definition/con-20031115

If you would like to seek help from Mayo Clinic, please contact the Appointment office. You can find numbers for our various locations here:

http://www.mayoclinic.org/appointments

I hope this is helpful to you.

Hoyt Finnamore

Wed, Jul 8 at 8:49am CDT by Hoyt Finnamore · View  

Walking by Faith, and Now by Sight

Jenny Peterson signs copies of her book, "She Walked by Faith, Not by Sight."In many ways, Jenny Peterson was like other mothers of young children. She cooked and baked, cleaned and washed clothes, and cheered her children on from the sidelines of their activities. In one significant way, though, Jenny was different: She did all of these things without sight.

Jenny lost her vision in 1976, after having a severe reaction to antibiotics. "I developed toxic epidermal necrolysis, and lost 100 percent of my skin, my hair and fingernails," says Jenny, a resident of Vermillion, South Dakota. She was just 23 at the time. Her children, just 2 and 5.

The antibiotics were meant to treat a sore throat. But her reaction was life-threatening. It caused Jenny's skin and mucous membranes to blister and peel. It also caused scarring in both of her eyes. She walked out of the hospital after 96 days, alive but functionally blind. "I could see shapes and light, but that was about it," she says. "I could walk around my own home, but I couldn't drive. I couldn't read. I couldn't see my children clearly."  [...]

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Hoyt Finnamore

Thu, Jul 2 at 3:25pm CDT by Hoyt Finnamore · View  

Cardiac Rehabilitation Helps Ardis Kyker Improve Her Health, Lose Weight and Avoid Surgery

Ardis Kyker with her cardiac rehabilitation therapist, Whitney Quast.Back in 2014, Ardis Kyker was at home going about her daily routine when she experienced tightening in her chest. The pain went away as soon as she sat down to rest, so she proceeded with her day.

Later, while pushing a cart at a grocery store, the pain returned with more intensity. So Ardis checked in at the Emergency Department at Mayo Clinic Health System in Red Wing, Minnesota. While test results ruled out a heart attack, the team in the Emergency Department scheduled her for a stress test because of the pain she was feeling on exertion. [...]

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Hoyt Finnamore

Fri, Jun 26 at 8:05am CDT by Hoyt Finnamore · View  

From Patient to Physician

Dr. Brandon Phillips with a young patient. Dr. Brandon Lane Phillips' experience as a patient and a student at Mayo Clinic influences his own practice of medicine today

As a pediatric cardiology fellow at Mayo Clinic, Dr. Brandon Lane Phillips cared for a number of children from Mongolia who had congenital heart defects. Before they went into surgery, he would take a photo of their hands next to his on a white piece of paper. He would do the same again after surgery and before they returned home.

The difference was striking. "In the pictures before heart surgery, you could clearly see a blue cast to their skin. After surgery, the blue was gone," he says. "That really hit home for me."

It made an impact because Dr. Phillips is not only a physician who specializes in pediatric cardiology, he's also been a pediatric cardiology patient.

"Many of the kids who came to us from Mongolia had the same heart defect I did: tetralogy of Fallot," he says. "They were often close to their teenage years and had never undergone surgery. These children were usually quite blue. They couldn't walk very far. It was a glimpse of what would have happened to me without the medical attention I received.  [...]

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