On October 23, 2006, 38 year old Maria Micheletto was in her Lockport, IL home when she was struck with the “worst headache of [her] life”. She could barely walk and army crawled to the phone to get help.By the time she arrived at a local hospital, Micheletto was paralyzed from the waist down. She sat in the ER waiting room for three long “excruciating” hours while a series of misdiagnoses occurred. Micheletto was then flown to University of Illinois Hospital & Health Sciences System where neurosurgeon Dr. Amin-Hanjani performed a craniotomy to repair her ruptured brain aneurysm. Micheletto said, “Dr. Hanjani’s staff was fabulous when I was in the hospital. While in the ICU, the nursing care was above great.” University of Illinois neurosurgeons rank first in the state for treating the most aneurysm cases.
Micheletto was deeply inspired by the care she received at the University of Illinois Hospital and because of this she re-directed her career and recently
became a nurse. Micheletto is a mother of two young children, has a busy nursing schedule at a suburban hospital and still finds time to support brain aneurysm survivors. She was one of the FIRST survivors to join the support group in Chicago and has become an important contributor to the Chicago BAF chapter through fundraisers, phone calls to survivors and through her inspiring story.
According to the Brain Aneurysm Foundation “aneurysms represent a very serious illness which is associated with a high rate of mortality and disability.” Micheletto can confirm that having survived a ruptured aneurysm is a very difficult experience to have gone through and can be extremely unsettling. Gathering information about the condition can help ease this fear, help begin the healing process, and bring a sense of comfort and support during a trying time. As a new nurse Micheletto can ease a patients’ anxiety as they recover through any illness by sharing her story. Her nursing skills and recovery will help others heal and strive for a healthy life, she provides daily, a Gift of Hope. For more information about brain aneurysms log onto www.bafound.org or the support group at www.chicagoaneurysmsupport.com or www.uicneurosurgery.com.
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