“One In 50 Million” Utah Man Has Organs In Reversed Position

Apr 22, 2019, 10:30 PM

ST. GEORGE, Utah — From the outside, he looks totally normal—but on the inside, Scott Berryessa is completely mixed up and incredibly rare.

He has a genetic condition relatively unknown because of how few people are diagnosed with it.

Scott Berryessa is living the good life. He is retired and spending half the year in sunny St. George.

He and his wife, Marilyn have been married for five very active years.

“In fact, I have a hard time keeping up with him,” said Marilyn with a laugh.

When they were dating, Marilyn learned pretty quickly Scott’s heart just wasn’t in the right place – literally.

“I could hear his heart on the right side,” she said.

For those a little confused, the “right” side is the wrong side for the heart to be.

“It’s called total situs inversus, which means I’m a mirror image of everybody else,” Scott said.

That makes him unlike pretty much unlike anyone else. His heart is not only in the wrong place, but all his other major organs are as well.

“It’s about one in 50 million,” Scott said.

He didn’t know he had the condition until a doctor diagnosed him at age 23.

“It was a shock and I asked him if I was going to have some problems because of it and he told me I probably wouldn’t because I had made it this far,” he said.

Most people born with the condition die at a young age. They certainly don’t play tennis in their retirement community.

“About five to 13 percent don’t live past the age of five,” Scott said.

Scott is 70-years-old and not slowing down one bit.

“(My condition) is a great conversation piece when I tell people,” he said, with a laugh. “If you put an x-ray up of you and turn it around it would look like me.”

One of the funniest questions he gets asked is where he places his hand during the pledge of allegiance.

“Yeah, it’s pretty weird I guess,” he said.

He and his wife are planning for many more healthy years together but eventually he plans to leave his body to science.

“I think they’d be interested in cutting me open,” he said.

While he’s still living, he plans to prove what’s on the inside (at least for him) doesn’t really count.

“To me, it’s just normal life and it’s wonderful,” he said.

KSL 5 TV Live

Top Stories

Local News

(Courtesy: Baron Edwards)...
Lauren Steinbrecher

Witness recounts ‘miraculous’ Moab rescue after BASE jumper crashes into cliff

Incredible video shows the terrifying moments a BASE jumper crashed into a cliff in Moab, then hung in the air high above the ground, his parachute stuck in the cliffside.
10 hours ago
(John Wilson/KSL TV)...
Josh Ellis

SB I-15 closed in Layton following police chase, shooting

State troopers have closed southbound Interstate 15 at Hill Field Road due to a police incident.
10 hours ago
Follow @KSL_AlexCabrero...
Alex Cabrero

SportClips in Sugar House reopens after massive apartment fire

SportClips in Sugar House reopened for business Tuesday, 33 days after they were forced to close due to a massive fire that broke out at an under-construction apartment complex.
1 day ago
Charges against Linda Tracy Gillman were dismissed after the state was not ready to move forward wi...
Emily Ashcraft, KSL.com

Charges dropped for 75-year-old woman accused of hiring hit man

Linda Tracy Gillman is already in prison after being convicted of trying to hire a hit man to kill her ex-husband and was scheduled to be on trial for attempting to hire another person, to eliminate evidence and a witness in that case.
1 day ago
Jed Boal

Plow drivers needed, but UDOT says the storm itself was the source of delay

Was it staffing issues or the storm itself at the source of traffic troubles Monday night and Tuesday morning across the Wasatch Front?
1 day ago
Tamara Vaifanua

Festival of Trees showcases 11-year-old who persevered against the odds

Patient Champion of the Festival of the Trees celebrates an 11-year-old girl who lost her leg in an accident six years ago and is now defying the odds.
1 day ago

Sponsored Articles

house with for rent sign posted...
Chase Harrington, president and COO of Entrata

Top 5 reasons you may want to consider apartment life over owning a home

There are many benefits of renting that can be overshadowed by the allure of buying a home. Here are five reasons why renting might be right for you.
Festive kitchen in Christmas decorations. Christmas dining room....
Lighting Design

6 Holiday Decor Trends to Try in 2022

We've rounded out the top 6 holiday decor trends for 2022 so you can be ahead of the game before you start shopping. 
Happy diverse college or university students are having fun on their graduation day...
BYU MBA at the Marriott School of Business

How to choose what MBA program is right for you: Take this quiz before you apply!

Wondering what MBA program is right for you? Take this quiz before you apply to see if it will help you meet your goals.
Diverse Group of Energetic Professionals Team Meeting in Modern Office: Brainstorming IT Programmer...
Les Olson

Don’t let a ransomware attack get you down | Protect your workplace today with cyber insurance

Business owners and operators should be on guard to protect their workplace. Cyber insurance can protect you from online attacks.
Hand turning a thermostat knob to increase savings by decreasing energy consumption. Composite imag...
Lighting Design

5 Lighting Tips to Save Energy and Money in Your Home

Advances in lighting technology make it easier to use smart features to cut costs. Read for tips to save energy by using different lighting strategies in your home.
Portrait of smiling practitioner with multi-ethnic senior people...
Summit Vista

How retirement communities help with healthy aging

There are many benefits that retirement communities contribute to healthy aging. Learn more about how it can enhance your life, or the life of your loved ones.
“One In 50 Million” Utah Man Has Organs In Reversed Position