Looking ‘pristine’; MRI reveals Fort Wayne teen’s brain has completely healed

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FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) – Sarah Faley, the Fort Wayne teenager whose life was saved with an emergency brain surgery last September, received good news after getting her first MRI since the procedure Tuesday morning– she has completely healed.

“It was super relieving,” said Faley. “I’m now kind of feeling super confident and comfortable with the past few months, but then also the next few years, knowing that everything’s all healed… I’m so thankful.”

According to Dr. Jodi Smith, the neurosurgeon at Peyton Manning Children’s Hospital who saved Faley’s life, the MRI showed no new cavernous malformations. There was just a “tiny bit” of staining of hemosiderin, which is an iron-storage complex. Other than that Dr. Smith describe Faley’s scan as looking “pristine.”

“So, there’s nothing else that we need to do, she’s no longer having seizures, she’s off seizure medication she’s normal, and she can go on,” said Dr. Smith. “I don’t have to actually see her again unless she’s having problems.”

The brain scan on the right shows what Faley’s brain looks like before the surgery. The scan on the left shows the healed brain.

Dr. Smith added that it’s also unlikely that Faley would ever develop a new cavernous malformation.

“The fact that I was able to completely remove the previous one that she had, although it was very large, because I removed it completely… It’s not going to come back so I really don’t need to do any further imaging,” said Dr. Smith.

The neurosurgeon also ruled out that the mass was hereditary, or that it could be passed on to Faley’s future children.

“She felt very confident that Sarah’s back to how she was, well she’s better than she was before actually,” said Kristi Edwards, Faley’s mom. “We’re so grateful, so so grateful.”

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