Severna Park Voice // October 6, 2015

An Arm For A Leg: Melissa Smith’s Battle Against Transverse Myelitis

By Zach Sparks - Severna Park Voice

No one has ever had to try harder to be normal than Melissa Smith. The Arnold resident is a two-time survivor of Hodgkin’s lymphoma, and she has Crohn’s disease and Transverse Myelitis, a rare neurological disease caused by inflammation of the spinal cord. But she’s also a loving aunt to her two nephews, Brayden and Andrew; the oldest sister in a group of four siblings; and an aspiring nurse, not to mention one of her most important roles: an inspiration.

Because of her multiple conditions, every day brings with it new challenges. Smith may experience chronic jolts to her leg or a searing pain in her intestines. To offset the effects of Transverse Myelitis, which has left her paralyzed from the chest down, she attends Kennedy Krieger Institute in Baltimore. But her Medicare limits her to 40 hours of therapy per year, and if she were to pay out of pocket, the cost would be $300 per day....

Read the full article HERE