creed0608's Journey with Intermediate-Grade Astrocytoma

Spouse/Partner: Brain and Spinal Cord Tumors in Adults > Glioma > Astrocytoma > Intermediate-Grade Astrocytoma

Patient Info: Currently in active treatment (initial surgery, receiving chemo rounds/radiation), Diagnosed: almost 6 years ago, Male, Age: 58

  1. 1
    • creed0608
    • Experience with Intermediate-Grade A...
    over 5 years ago
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    Diagnosed

    Oh No

    It was the early morning hours of April 28th, 2011, when my husband was having a seizure. I didn't know what was happening, it sounded like he was snoring extra loud, but it became apparent pretty quickly that something was wrong. He was unresponsive and wouldn't wake up, but was making these loud snoring/struggling to breathe noises. A trip to the hospital quickly found a mass in his front left lobe via a cat scan, which appeared to be a meningioma. However, surgery and pathology revealed a stage 3 oligoastrocytoma. How your life can change in an instant.

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  2. 2
    • creed0608
    • Experience with Intermediate-Grade A...
    over 5 years ago
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    Surgery

    Procedure or Surgery

    My husband has 6.5 hours of surgery on 5/10/11. He had to be awake for the surgery due to the tumor's proximity to critical areas in the brain. The doctor did encourage him to mentally prepare for this complex surgery as he would have to be a key participant, having to speak and move according to his direction every 15 minutes to ensure that they weren't entering an area that would affect him in the long term. I saw him after surgery and he was ok...he did have a lot of pain at that point after the surgery that didn't subside for a couple of days, but all in all, it was amazing how well he healed. His surgery ended at 5:30pm on a Tuesday and by 1pm on Thursday, he was discharged. The surgeon was able to remove 100% of the tumor, thank God. We attribute him being able to do this to the fact that my husband was such a good patient and stayed with them/alert/in control during the long procedure.

    Went as Expected: Agree
    Minimal Recovery: Strongly Agree
    Minimal Side Effects: Strongly Agree
    Minimal Impact to Daily Life: Strongly Agree
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  3. 3
    • creed0608
    • Experience with Intermediate-Grade A...
    over 5 years ago
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    External radiation

    Radiation

    My husband had radiation for a period of 6 weeks. They had a special mask created for him. About 3 weeks into the radiation, he began to lose his hair and when it started, it came out quickly. He was very distressed about this, even though we know if that is the worst of it, he is lucky. Besides having to travel to the hospital,which took 45 minutes each way, there was minimal impact to daily life. About 1/2 way through, he did start to feel a little more fatigued, but nothing that a quick cat nap in the afternoon wouldn't fix.

    Painless Experience: Agree
    Minimal Side Effects: Neutral/NA
    Minimal Impact to Daily Life: Neutral/NA
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  4. 4
    • creed0608
    • Experience with Intermediate-Grade A...
    over 5 years ago
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    Chemotherapy

    Drug or Chemo Therapy

    My husband was on a low dose chemotherapy treatment (Temador) simultaneously with the radiation treatment (total of 42 days). We did not notice any side effects from this. He did take a Zofran pill 30 minutes prior to taking the pills each night. After the 42 days ended, his treatment was 1 month off, then take Temador again 5 days a month for 6 months. The first month was ok, without many side effects at all, except trouble sleeping, which I think was related to anxiety. The second month, I believe he might have had come in contact with a virus of some sort, as he did ok during the 5 days of taking Temador, but the next week he did not feel well at all. He had aches, pains, chills, low grade fever and generally felt bad. But again, I do not think this was related,,,I think it might have been a combination of minimal side effects and a bug of some sort. He is now taking the 3rd round and has 2 more days left. So far, so good.

    Easy to Do: Agree
    Minimal Side Effects: Neutral/NA
    Minimal Impact to Daily Life: Neutral/NA
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  5. 5
    • creed0608
    • Experience with Intermediate-Grade A...
    over 5 years ago
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    Clean MRI

    Celebration

    My husband had an MRI on 8/9/11 that was clean with no signs of re-growth. I was overwhelmed with emotion. He is the type of guy that has an 'it is what it is' attitude. He doesn't get himself too wrapped up in worrying...I do enough of that for both of us. The next MRI is scheduled for 11/3/11 and I am worrying already.

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  6. 6
    • creed0608
    • Experience with Intermediate-Grade A...
    over 5 years ago
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    1p19q deletion

    Celebration

    We learned that my husband's tumor contained a chromozone deficiency, called 1p19q deletion. From what I understand, this is a good thing, meaning that the tumor is more likely to respond to treatment. This was a good day learning this news, as I welcome any piece of good news.

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