Patient Stories

For Noemi, More Range of Motion Means More Possibilities

Story Summary

If you ask 9-year-old Noemi which superpowers she would want most, she answers “teleportation” and “healing.” It’s not hard to imagine why.

Immediately after Noemi was born, the neonatal intensive care unit referred her and her mother Andrea to Shriners Children’s™. They visited for the first time when Noemi was two weeks old, and she was diagnosed with arthrogryposis multiplex congenita.

This rare disorder causes stiff joints and abnormal muscle development. It can lead to a limited range of motion in wrists, hands, elbows, shoulders, hips, knees and ankles. Sometimes, the motion is so limited that the joint is fixed and there’s no movement at all.

Arthrogryposis has no known cure, but because the physicians at Shriners Children’s have treated thousands of children with this disorder, Andrea knew that her baby was in good hands.

Over the years Noemi has benefited from a range of treatments including casting, orthotics, and corrective surgeries. These interventions have changed the course of her life. Without them, Noemi wouldn’t be able to walk, but with them, her mobility and independence are flourishing.

Thanks to treatment, Noemi can complete many activities of daily life. P.E. is one of her favorite classes, and a special program at Shriners Children’s has helped her realize another dream. Through BikeFit, Noemi was gifted and trained on an adaptive bike. Now she can experience the joy of peddling and cruising alongside her siblings and friends.

How Your Kindness Helps Kids Like Noemi Thrive

The loving community and family-friendly environment at Shriners Children’s have also been a blessing to Andrea, who could tell from the beginning that “Everyone truly cares about the kids.” She’s watched and rejoiced as special supports like the activity center, gifts during stays, and time with therapy dogs have supported both her and Noemi in “healing and maintaining a positive focus.”

To the generous donors who have made so much possible for Noemi, Andrea has clear message: “Your kindness will make all the difference to a child and [their] family who are struggling to give them their best life.” Andrea would certainly know – thanks to the loving gifts of donors, Noemi has had every chance to thrive.

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