MIAMI (CBSMiami) — A teen, suffering from a painful and debilitating disease, got her wish of becoming a doctor for the day.
Dressed in scrubs, walking the halls at Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital on the ICU floor Tuesday, it was 17-year-old Madison Burton, side-by-side with the Chief of Pediatrics and Congenital Heart Surgery preparing for their patient.
“That’s the aortic valve and that’s the pulmonary valve,” said the doctor as the two were reviewing a scan.
Just 5-days-old and 5 pounds, they were getting ready to operate on a tiny baby born with a hole in his or her heart.
“Madison is part of our team today. We really wanted to give her kind of an immersive experience and make her wish come true,” said Dr. Frank Scholl.
Madison is living her dream.
The teenager was diagnosed with Crohn’s Disease – a chronic inflammation of the digestive tract that for her is both painful and debilitating.
It can sometimes be life-threatening. Madison is used to being the patient herself.
“Some days I just wake up and can’t really do normal activities. It like sets me back sometimes,” she said.
Today, she’s the professional thanks to the Make-A-Wish Foundation which granted her wish to become a doctor, specifically, a cardiologist.
“She studies the heart in her room. She’s been fascinated with being a surgeon since she was six. It makes me so happy to see her happy and not dealing with the daily of I don’t feel good or what doctors appointment are we going to today just to have a day of not thinking about that,” her mother Heather Burton said.
Madison sat in the operating room, feet from the surgeons she admires, as they performed the delicate surgery on the newborn.
She wasn’t able to take part in the operation just yet, but getting her wish to be that close, she says, is everything she always wanted.
“Makes me feel really good and like honored to be able to do this. I just wanna be able to help people, help them get better,” said Madison.