Devaney Mehl has always lived an extremely active and adventurous life. Whether it’s taking on a challenging hike, going deep sea diving or sky diving out of a plane, Devaney was always up for challenge. In fact, it was during one of her skydiving trips that she would meet her husband Chad. All of these activities would suddenly be put on hold in March of 2016 when she would undergo laparoscopic surgery to remove a kidney stone.
After Devaney’s procedure to remove her kidney stone, her back pain just never seemed to subside. She was experiencing constant pain, and felt nauseous and dizzy. The pain was extremely burdensome and caused Devaney to really limit her activities, even having to step away from her job as a social worker. Despite numerous tests and trips to the Estevan emergency room, physicians couldn’t pinpoint what was causing the issue.
“The pain was really starting to affect my daily life. I couldn’t get off the couch, and just felt like sleeping all the time.” Devaney explains. “It was a challenging time both physically and mentally. Not only was I sick, but I felt like I was letting down those around me as well.”
Not knowing what could be causing Devaney’s pain, she was then referred to Dr. Bhanu Prasad, a Regina kidney specialist. Within days of reviewing Devaney’s file, Dr. Prasad called Devaney and informed her that she was suffering from loin pain hematuria syndrome, a rare disease which affect 13 out of 100,000 people. Dr. Prasad also informed Devaney that she was a candidate for a renal artery denervation procedure, which is a minimally invasive process of introducing a catheter into the blood supply to the kidneys which delivers thermal energy (heat) across the blood vessel wall which interrupts the pain signal to the brain.
Wrapped in pillows to absorb as much shock as possible, Devaney and her husband Chad would travel from Estevan to Regina to meet with Drs. Prasad and Goyal in September of 2016. The very next week Dr. Goyal and his team would perform a successful renal denervation procedure for Devaney, alleviating the pain that has been controlling her life.
“Being able to undergo this procedure was absolutely life changing.” Devaney tell us. “Other than basically pain management there are limited treatment options for loin pain hematuria syndrome, so being able to get off those medications and regain my life is incredible.”
Devaney would go six months pain and medication free, until the pain started to return. Although this was to be expected, Devaney would undergo a second renal denervation procedure in December of 2016 for treatment. The procedure was again a success and Devaney is currently going on five years pain free thanks to the amazing work of Drs. Prasad and Goyal, and their amazing medical teams.
“Having these types of treatments and quality doctors available is absolutely essential. They are quite literally heroes.” Devaney explains. “The care I received was amazing and honestly life changing. Without the support of Hospitals of Regina Foundation and these amazing health care workers, none of this would have been possible - and for that, thank you!”
“Devaney’s story is an amazing example of the importance of investing in cutting edge medical research, right here in Regina. This procedure is not being performed anywhere else in the world. Doctors Prasad and Goyal may have developed a less invasive, more effective treatment for this terrible disease, saving so many from a life of endless pain and opiate dependence”, says Lisa Green, Senior Vice President, Hospitals of Regina Foundation. “The Foundation is committed to investing in innovative local medical research that may lead to better ways of caring for our southern Saskatchewan community as well as people around the world.”