Condition: Chiari Malformation
City, State: MT
Club: Alkali Creek Elementary School
Date Adopted: 2/26/2009
(3.13.09) Riley is a beautiful 12 year old girl that likes to ride her bike, play video games, take photos, scrapbook, paint, dance, and play with her two dogs. She dreams of becoming a photographer when she grows up. What is different about Riley is that she gets headaches from the manner in which her brain sits in her skull. Sometimes she stops breathing for up to 30 seconds when she sleeps. The position of her brain causes difficulty in things such as writing. She also has scoliosis, a curvature of her spine. In January 2009 Riley went to New York and had surgery to make sure her brains sits in her skull correctly. She goes to physical and occupational therapy to help make the muscles in her neck and hands strong as the surgery made them weaker than they used to be. She is tutored at home. Her next surgery is scheduled for April 20, 2009 in New York. She will have surgery on her lower back to untether her spinal cord. When Riley was born, her spinal cord connected to her spine too far down, and this pulls on her brain - causing it to sit lower than it should. The doctors have already corrected where the brain sits, and now they need to correct what caused it to be pulled from where it should sit. Riley cannot wait to have all of this behind her so she can go back to school!