Our Stories - Regina McGuire

Compassionate Care Makes the Difference

 Regina McGuire puts it very simply - "basically, my bone marrow decided not to work."        

The 16-year-old Ravena-Coeymans-Selkirk High School sophomore has aplastic anemia, a condition that occurs when your body stops producing enough new blood cells; that results in fatigue and creates a higher risk for infection and uncontrolled bleeding.    

Regina has been dealing with these risks since she was diagnosed at age 6 when her parents noticed abnormal brusing on her legs.    

Since then, she has been a regular at the Melodies Center for Childhood Cancer and Blood Disorders, part of the Bernard & Millie Duker Children's Hospital at Albany Med. Often, those visits require a blood transfusion.    

"Sometimes it is a little scary to be a teenager who has such a serious illness," Regina said. "Definitely, other people don't understand it because they're like, 'oh, you're so tough', and I'm like, 'well, I don't really have a choice, you know. I have to be tough.'"    

She plays violin, sings and acts and enjoys life thanks to the care she gets at Albany Med.    

"They always find a way to kind of put it in perspective and not make it sound too scary," she said. They always explain it to me, not just my parents. That's very helpful."    

Return to Our Stories