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celebral palsy

Izzy Kessler

Izzy Kessler, now 20 years old, was born with Cerebral Palsy. In 8th grade, her scoliosis became so severe that surgery was necessary. Dr. Sponseller performed Izzy’s surgery at John Hopkins in Baltimore and was able to completely straighten her spine and give her perfect posture!

Izzy is an athlete, a high school graduate, a coach, and a mentor who began her athletic career early, excelling in bocce and swimming. In high school, she was the captain of the Bethesda Chevy Chase High School Varsity Co-ed Bocce Team, which won the Maryland State Championship. She now coaches that team and competes with the National Rehabilitation Hospital’s adaptive rowing program. She also volunteers two days a week at the hospital to mentor inpatient pediatric patients.

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Isebel Holmes

Isabel was born prematurely at twenty-nine weeks and was later  diagnosis with Cerebral Palsy.  She has been under the care of Dr. Mark Abel since 2001.  As Isabel continued to grow, her spine curvature did too, and soon it was causing her discomfort and negatively impacting her quality of life. Isabel had to have multiple surgeries to fix both kyphotic and lordotic curves in her back, but after six months of recovery time, Isabel’s family was able to see astonishing improvements in Isabel’s daily life.  Her pain has lessened, her sleep has improved, she is able to take less medicine, and she can face forward to see who she is interacting with.  Also, due to Isabel’s increased lung capacity, her speech has improved, and her parents are able to hear her say things that she couldn’t before.  The Holmes are very happy with Isabel’s spinal surgery.

“We are so grateful to see these changes in her life.  I think we got excellent guidance as well as surgical expertise and care.  Thank you, Mark Abel.  We owe you so many thanks for your help in bringing back Isabel’s smile.”                     — Penny Holmes

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