St. David's HealthCare - September 08, 2022
Shelly Snow siling headshot

In 2002, a car accident completely changed Shelly Snow’s life.

Shelly was living and working as a teacher in Reno, Nevada, when a mail truck hit her car from behind at a stoplight. She suffered numerous injuries, including a closed head injury, spinal fractures and broken bones in her face. She underwent extensive surgery to heal her injuries, but continued to suffer from constant neck pain and short-term memory loss for nine years.

Prior to the accident, Shelly had been working on her Ph.D. and was a science and social studies teacher at an elementary school. Her career, as well as her studies of native plants used by indigenous people (a passion of hers), was put on hold after the accident. She was in constant pain and relied on her husband to help her perform the most basic tasks. Shelly eventually moved to Llano with her husband when he was presented with a new job opportunity.

Shelly Snow in a neck brace.

On October 7, 2021, Dr. Carl Lauryssen, medical director of neurosurgery at St. David’s Round Rock Medical Center, performed cervical spinal fusion surgery on Shelly, fusing vertebrae three through seven and inserting a plate into her neck. Now, for the first time since 2002, Shelly is pain free. And with the new school year right around the corner, Shelly is going back to teaching, something she wasn’t sure she would be able to do again.

Read more at the Austin-American Statesman