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Mind over matter

Junior goes through a life or death brain surgery

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Mind over matter

Riley Vernon, Reporter

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It all began as a normal day in the family room on April 30, 2016. Watching TV. Playing video games. There was a feeling that beat junior Carlos Cardona, an overpowering feeling of dizziness and confusion. He then passed out while his father watched him. He fell down the stairs and was at the bottom when he was awoken.

After the fall, junior Carlos Cardona was rushed to the hospital. His doctor told him that he needed brain surgery. During the surgery, the doctor diagnosed him with a brain AVM, otherwise known as an arteriovenous malformation.

It was a life or death situation.

“All I can say was that it was scary,” Carlos said. “I was scared I was going to die and not be able to see my friends and family again.”

AVM is a rare condition in which the veins in the brain or spine tangle or grow abnormally. It can cause bleeding in the brain and lead up to a stroke.

“I was surprised that I survived,” Carlos said. “ I still have lots of problems [from the surgery] though, like vomiting and stomach pains.”

After spending a month in the hospital, Carlos was healthy enough to go home. He is still going through the recovery part.

“I’m still healing, but everyday I’m getting better,” Carlos said. “I think by the end of November to December, I’ll be fully back.”

He has limitations to his day to day life. Since the surgery, swimming underwater for too long and riding roller coasters is too dangerous for him.

Since the surgery, he has had to learn how to deal with his condition. According to Carlos, it has been a learning curve for him with how he lives his life, but he is getting back to his normal self.

During this difficult time in his life, Carlos came back with a new perspective. He was given a second chance at life and he doesn’t take that lightly. “Death can be anywhere, anytime even if you don’t think so,“ Carlos said.

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Mind over matter