Saint Mary's College student Jaime Sconberg is no stranger to the world of competitive athletics—or to the hospital operating room. Years of fierce training and competition in gymnastics led to dislocations of both her ankles—the first after a balance beam dismount and the second after a double back flip. Both injuries required surgery. But her medical journey didn't end there. While healing from her second operation, severe pain gripped her lower body.
"The pain began in my hips, and then I started having pain and numbness in my lower back and shooting pain down my legs," recalls the 23-year-old. "I had trouble sitting for longer than 10 minutes."
Sconberg sought care from Sutter Roseville Medical Center spine specialist
Kavian Shahi, M.D., who diagnosed a congenital condition called pars defect, or spondylolysis. The condition is common in young athletes who repeatedly hyperextend their spine. The solution was surgery to fuse two vertebra together.
Today, Sconberg is pain-free and pursuing a new passion: running. She's also taking college courses to prepare her to help others down the road. "I loved going to see my Sutter doctors so much that it helped me with my career choice," she adds. "I'm looking forward to becoming a physician!"