A Plano teenager is proof that overcoming adversity is hard, but not impossible.
When 17-year-old Mario Frias jumped behind the driver’s seat of an ATV while vacationing in Mexico last Christmas.
He never expected what happened next.
“I took a hard turn and felt it flip over. My first thing was to take my hand,” Frias said.
“I knew straight away it was gone.”
The doctors had no choice but to ultimately amputate his left hand.
His mother said in Spanish how devastated she was about what it meant for her son, as the weight of his new reality hit Frias hardest on the soccer field, where he was once the high school goaltender. .
“I got emotional because I’ll never be a goalkeeper like I was. So yeah, kinda sad emotional, like I’ve been crying all night,” Frias said.
Pain quickly turned to determination.
One of his first hurdles was overcoming the phantom pains.
“Phantom pain is something very common that happens to patients who have lost a limb. What happened in Mario’s particular case was that he felt his hand was still in a position of type fist after his injury. This feeling has not disappeared. .
Sarah Garza, Occupational Therapist for Children’s Health, used Mirror Therapy to trick Mario’s brain into releasing the tension he was feeling where his left hand was and after a few sessions, it worked!
Now he is working towards the next major step which is getting a prosthetic hand.
“We’re trying to strengthen his muscles so they can eventually operate on the prostheses,” Garza said.
“I’m just excited for everything to be honest, just to get another hand,” Frias said.
He is confident he will get his new hand soon and he hopes he can continue to inspire anyone who might need a ray of hope.
“It’s the speed bump, like it was an accident, but things happen for a reason. So I just hope for the best,” Frias said.