Ryan Shearer (18) loves acting and performing. Her family is also very important to her. She recently started her first semester of college at the University of South Dakota as an acting major. Unfortunately, this young lady was forced to withdraw from school due to being diagnosed with a serious medical condition.
About six months ago, Ryan began having back pain. She visited the urgent care who gave her ibuprofen and suggested she begin physical therapy. As her pain continued, she visited the emergency room and received an x-ray and MRI on her spine. The exam results revealed that her L5 vertebra was fractured and disintegrating. After performing a biopsy, doctors confirmed Ryan had a giant cell tumor on her vertebrae. “Ryan is taking it like a champ,” said her father, Mark. “Her biggest concern was for the burden this would put on her mother and me.”
Each day is challenging for Ryan. She is constantly in pain and spends most of her time laying down. Following her diagnosis, she met with a team of doctors at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota. She is currently on medication to solidify her vertebrae before she can undergo surgery to treat her condition. They plan to remove the vertebrae with the tumor and use a piece of her fibula to rebuild the space between the L4 and S1 vertebrae before fusing it all together.
In need of financial assistance, Ryan’s parents hope to raise $20,000 through RedBasket.org to help offset the cost of her medical bills and expenses. “Reaching our goal would ensure that Ryan continues to get the care she needs and return our family to a more normal life much sooner,” Mark said. Please consider making a tax-deductible donation and help relieve the financial burden for Ryan’s family so they can focus on her recovery journey. Share her story today!