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For 13-year-old Peter, his friend’s birthday was a fun day filled with cake and flag football. But later that evening, the day turned to tragedy. His father found him in his bedroom acting strange, so he called 911. The EMTs who arrived on the scene thought it was likely a concussion, as well. However, Peter’s condition worsened at a local hospital and it was soon determined that he needed to go to a larger, more sophisticated medical center, such as Geisinger, via Life Flight®. Once at Geisinger Janet Weis Children’s Hospital, the pediatric specialists determined Peter had a cavernoma malformation, or a bleeding blood vessel in his brain, and needed surgery to correct it. But the excess blood flooding his brain needed to clear out before the procedure could be performed.

During the month that Peter was hospitalized, at least one of his parents slept right by his side in the PICU in a pull-out sofa provided by donations to Children’s Miracle Network (CMN). They needed to be right there through the surgeries and recovery, fevers, physical and speech therapies, and so much more. Thanks to donations to CMN, Geisinger can help cover the cost of other needed physical therapy items, such as swings.

It has been a long road to recovery, one that has so far included the short-term use of a tracheotomy to aid Peter’s breathing. But today, he is walking and running, jumping on the trampoline and playing basketball with his brother.

2023 Miracle Kid, Peter Swistock of Port Matilda
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