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Dylan is a Solid Swimmer Thanks to Shriners Children’s

Meet Dylan

Dylan's first fracture was at 10 months of age, with no readily apparent cause. It was then that his mother, Jenny, a pediatric nurse, knew something was wrong.

Dylan was soon diagnosed with osteogenesis imperfecta (OI), a condition that is sometimes referred to as “brittle bone disease.” This condition weakens the bone structure and can cause fractures to happen very easily. Since his diagnosis, Dylan has been a patient of Shriners Children’s Texas, receiving continual treatments for OI since he was only 14 months old.

At the age of 11, Dylan was also diagnosed with scoliosis, which is a curvature of the spine. Because his scoliosis is not considered to be severe, under normal circumstances it could be treated with a special brace. However, as a result of his OI condition, he does not wear a brace. Instead, his scoliosis is closely monitored to make sure it does not get worse.

Now 16, Dylan is a sophomore in high school and an athlete. While he played baseball for many seasons, starting with tee ball and continuing right up until high school, he decided that high school baseball was a little too risky for his OI condition. So, he turned his efforts to swimming. Dylan has since become a highly competitive swimmer, and placed third in his region last school year. His goal this year is to go to state.

Dylan is not only an accomplished athlete, he also plays bass clarinet in the high school marching band. He has the rank of Life Scout in Boy Scouts, and he is a member of Future Farmers of America. Dylan also has an interest in robotics. He obviously doesn’t let OI limit his interests.

I can’t stress enough that he wouldn’t be the kid that he is today without Shriners helping him.
Jenny, Dylan's mother

“Just by looking at him, you wouldn’t know (about his condition),” Jenny said. According to Jenny, this is thanks to his ongoing treatment at Shriners Children’s Texas. “I can’t stress enough that he wouldn’t be the kid that he is today without Shriners helping him. Shriners is just like family to us, because they have seen him grow up.”

It wasn’t an easy road, though. At Dylan’s first appointment as a toddler at Shriners Children’s, a skeletal survey revealed that he had two fractures that were previously undetected. Thankfully, after starting his treatments, the number of fractures since then have been minimal, with only four occurring since that time. While that might sound like a lot, you have to consider that Dylan has been a very active young boy all this time.

“I want him to be a kid,” Jenny said. “I don’t want to hold him back and tell him what he can’t do.”

“I keep myself pretty busy,” Dylan agreed.

As a result of his care with Shriners Children’s Texas, Dylan can continue to strive for his next goal, whether it’s in the pool, on the field or in the classroom.

“I’ve loved Shriners my whole life,” Dylan said. “They’ve always been super-caring and good to us.”

Dylan with medals and trophy

Dylan and his swimming awards

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