Life-saving brain surgery alleviated Michelle's seizures



In March of 2013, 15-year-old Michelle underwent life-saving brain surgery at Children’s Hospital Colorado.

Michelle had her first seizure in 2010. Her doctors believed her seizures could be controlled with medicine, and for three years, that was the case.

During Michelle’s freshman year of high school, she had a seizure the day before her much-anticipated quinceanera. She had another seizure a few days later. Michelle’s parents promptly took her to the emergency room.

Bleeding in Michelle's brain required immediate surgery

Michelle’s neurosurgeon, Dr. Michael Handler, looked her over and ordered an MRI. He told Michelle and her parents that she needed surgery as soon as possible.

One of the hemangiomas in Michelle’s brain was growing and causing bleeding. If surgeons did not remove the benign tumor, Michelle could have become paralyzed or slipped into a coma.

“The surgeons are awesome people,” said Miguel. “They went straight to the point and helped her understand what was going on, which made her feel a lot better.”

Michelle held in her tears and told herself that everything would be fine as she was wheeled into the operating room.

“There was so much I hadn’t done, so much I hadn’t learned, and I regretted taking everything I had for granted,” said Michelle.

Healthy and looking toward the future

Michelle is doing well. Her biggest struggle was catching up with her school work at her academically vigorous school.

“Now that I think about it, I feel blessed,” said Michelle. “Yes, I may have had brain surgery, and I had to learn to walk and shower again, but there are kids with worse situations.”

Michelle is now planning for a future that includes college and a career helping kids.

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