19-year-old Clayton Huyser has been diagnosed with a rare disorder that causes malformation of veins in his brain.

Courtesy photo

19-year-old Clayton Huyser has been diagnosed with a rare disorder that causes malformation of veins in his brain.

Rare brain disorder strikes Hayden teen

Clayton Huyser remains in intensive care


On the 'Net

Clayton Huyser's mother, Kristy Stinnett, created a Web site with a frequently updated blog to allow friends and family to follow Huyser's progress. Visit CarePages.com and complete the free registration to visit Clayton's page. Once registered, go to www.carepages.com/ carepages/ClaytonsAngels.

Donations to help pay Huyser's medical bills can be made at any branch of the First National Bank of the Rockies or at donation boxes in Planet Powersports.

A previously undiagnosed brain disorder left 19-year-old Clayton Huyser on the brink of death Jan. 29, and his recovery process has not yet started.

Huyser, a Hayden resident and active snowmobile rider, dirt bike rider and camper, was stricken when a rare malformation of veins in his brain caused him to have a stroke shortly after finishing work at The Industrial Company, or TIC, for the day. Waiting for a ride home at a friend's house, Huyser lost control of half his body as he suffered a stroke, quickly slipping into a coma.

After a Flight for Life transport to Denver and two brain surgeries, Huyser remains in intensive care in St. Anthony Central Hospital in Denver.

The brain disorder, called arteriovenous malformation, or AVM, is an irregularly formed set of veins in the brain. In some cases, the disfiguration can cause strokes.

Huyser's mother, Kristy Stinnett, has remained in Denver with her son. She said he was making progress in nodding yes or no to answer questions, but she said she hadn't seen him fully awake for three days.

Huyser's recovery took another setback Sunday morning as the family was informed that scans reveal Huyser has a second AVM on the back of his brain, and a tube was inserted to help relieve pressure in his brain.

"We were hoping to move out of ICU this weekend but this came up yesterday out of the blue," Stinnett said. "He's hanging in there, and hopefully in the next couple days, they'll take out the tracheotomy tube. : I miss his voice."

Huyser, a graduate of Steamboat Springs High School, recently began working for T.I.C. He was 30 days away from receiving health insurance, Stinnett said, and with more than 25 days in intensive care, the bills are piling up.

Huyser's father, Mike Huyser, created a trust fund at the First National Bank of the Rockies and his 17-year-old brother, Nathan Huyser, set up donation boxes at Planet Powersports, where he works.

Clayton Huyser can move all of his limbs, Stinnett said, but the left side of his body is still sluggish.

Doctors are unsure how long recovery could take.

Stinnett said he appears responsive, but AVM strokes can cause memory loss, vision loss and other long-term symptoms not yet apparent.

Even after Clayton Huyser returns home, physical therapy likely will take more than a year.

"I miss him quite a bit, we used to do all this stuff together," Nathan Huyser said. "We'd watch out for each other quite a bit so you'd imagine if you're watching out for a brother or sister and then they're like this, you've just got to sit there and watch."

Nathan Huyser said he has seen some good signs - Clayton Huyser was able to smile when his dad asked him to and gave his brother the peace sign.

But there are also signs of frustration.

"Sometimes it seems like he's doing OK because I've gotten him to smile for me, like a halfway smile, but sometimes he has an agitated face," Nathan Huyser said.

Doctors have removed a section of Clayton Huyser's skull, but re-covered the area with scalp to allow future access if more surgery is necessary.

For now, Stinnett said, the family plans to wait and hopefully allow him to recover.


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