Doctors treating girl shot by arrow hold press conference

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WAUWATOSA -- Children's Hospital doctors who helped save the life of a seven-year-old girl hit in the back with an arrow Sunday, May 20th held a press conference Tuesday evening, May 22nd to discuss little Aryanna Schneeberg's condition.

The arrow's tip sliced through five of Aryanna's major organs, and doctors said Tuesday two centimeters made the difference. One doctor said he's never seen an arrow injury to a human being, and this could have had a very bad outcome.

Aryanna was in fair condition as of Tuesday, and was walking, talking and going to the bathroom on her own, but there is a long road to recovery ahead for the first grader who was seriously injured while playing outside near her home in Campbellsport.

Doctors showed a CT scan taken of Aryanna, revealing the metal point of an arrow buried deep within the back of the seven-year-old. The tip of the arrow was described as a field point, often used in target practice. The arrow affected five different organs.

"I would describe her as a seven-year-old bundle of strength," Aryanna's doctor, John Densmore said.

Luckily, the arrow was left inside Aryanna's body and not pulled out by those on the scene or first responders, which likely saved the girl's life.

"The reflex that you have to overcome is to remove the arrow. It's not easy to see a child with a projectile. In the field, they handled it perfectly," Dr. Densmore said.

Aryanna's mother, Laura Schneeberg also spoke out about the incident on Tuesday. "I screamed when I seen it. She was in the sidewalk right in front of our house," Laura Schneeberg said.

Laura Schneeberg calls the incident an accident. Law enforcement officials have recovered the bow of a neighbor, but have made no arrests.

"The reflex that you have to overcome is to remove the arrow. It's not easy to see a child with a projectile. In the field, they handled it perfectly," Dr. Densmore said.

Aryanna had to undergo surgery at Children's Hospital, which took about two hours. All of her affected organs were able to be preserved. 

"We project a one to two-week stay in the hospital, until we wait for her intestines to heal. She is lucky to be alive, but obviously unlucky to be hit by this arrow," Dr. Densmore said.

Dr. Densmore said Tuesday he sees many wounds that penetrate the body, but most are gunshots. He said he’s never dealt with an arrow before.

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