- Diagnosed with: Glioblastoma
- Location: Florida
- Navigator: Cathy French
Although this journey is difficult, God has continued to bless us in so many ways— Brain Tumor Network is definitely one of those blessings. This journey continues to strengthen our faith, and we strive to let our faith be bigger than our fear.”
Told by wife/caregiver of patient
On August 3, 2017, our family’s life changed with the diagnosis of a 5cm brain mass in my husband, David’s, right frontal lobe. We would learn about a week later following surgery that the mass had a name - Glioblastoma. Our journey had begun in July when I noticed David had some mild personality changes and just seemed to be moving slowly with routine activities. Although headaches had been a common occurrence for him, the headache he experienced before going to the hospital wouldn’t go away. He also experienced vision changes and left-sided weakness during the week prior to his diagnosis. We ended up going to the emergency room where they performed a CT scan. Within 45 minutes, we were told he had a mass. Surgery followed on August 8th with a two-week hospital stay, and then eight days in rehab. Needless to say, we were overwhelmed, frightened, and unsure of the future decisions that we would need to make.
One day at the hospital, a friend told me about her sister-in-law who works at the Brain Tumor Network. Since Glioblastoma (GBM) is very aggressive, we were told that the treatment options needed to be looked into quickly. Our local physician at Baptist MD Anderson told us about the standard of care treatment, which is radiation and chemotherapy. We also contacted Duke University Brain Tumor Center for a second opinion and for treatment options. Duke did not have a clinical trial David could enter. We also went to the University of Florida (UF) where David did qualify for a clinical trial. It was during the time we were searching for treatment options that I contacted Cathy French with the Brain Tumor Network. She was wonderful! She has helped us research any trials we could find and gave us suggestions on other trials we were not aware of. She is part of a knowledgeable team at BTN. She has been a great resource to us by sharing our medical records with other brain cancer centers and helping us navigate any questions we have. BTN is also a great support system for the caregivers. The caregiving book Cathy mailed me was a good resource as I began this new caregiving journey.
My husband is 9 months out from treatment and he is still in the clinical trial at UF. His MRI’s remain stable and we continue to praise God. Once this trial is finished, we know we need to have another treatment plan ready. We are so thankful that Cathy and the Brain Tumor Network will be there to help us navigate that process. Although this journey is difficult, God has continued to bless us in so many ways—the Brain Tumor Network is definitely one of those blessings. This journey continues to strengthen our faith and we strive to let our faith be bigger than our fear.