Thursday, April 15, 2010

1st Neurosurgen Apt (Wenatchee)


Wow. So much has happened in less than 72 hours that I don't even know where to begin.

First of all, I can not believe how loved I am - I have the best life and the most amazing group of family and friends, thanks to everyone that has been bombarding me with love and support through emails, texts, facebook posts, word of mouth, etc. I feel really powerful right now, like I can conquer the world!

Today was great starting out - I've been using my trademark "black humor" which has been really helpful, but then sometime around mid-day I had a reality check and burst into tears that this is going to be such a burden on everyone around me. I'm aware that this is going to be a lot of work for all of us, and I'm really grateful for the all of the love.

So - 2nd Jess Update
I met with the Wenatchee Neurosurgeon yesterday afternoon. He gave me the diagnosis of a Parietal Meningeal Lateral Posterior tumor (don't remember if that's the correct order of the words because I don't have my notes with me). When I looked at the screens from my MRI and Angiogram it was pretty crazy. The tumor is huge. I guess that's why they want to operate immediately. It's pushing the left side of my brain over the midline to the right side of my brain and causing outward symptoms.

They're worried at this point because the tumor is pushing down on my brain onto some veins and an artery and they're worried that the pressure could cause a rupture, seizures, a stroke, etc.

The Wenatchee neurosurgeon wanted me in for surgery at 8:00 am this morning, but I told him that I wanted a second opinion. He is one of two neurosurgeons in Wenatchee and they cover everything below and above to both borders of the state. They're the only neurosurgeons between Spokane and Seattle.

I didn't want to be insulting - but this IS my brain we're talking about here, and after he gave me an overview of the craniotomy, using terminology like, "You will take a nap, then I will scoop it out like ice cream." After that, I really needed another neurosurgeon (from Harborview) to review my file. Right now I'm in a waiting game. All of my film, scans and my chart are waiting at Harborview for review by Dr. Sekhar the head of the neurosurgery department (and widely regarded as one of the top neurosurgeons in the world). They will review everything tomorrow (Friday) and I should hear back on Monday regarding surgery.

I want the best of the best for my surgery, but if I have it in Seattle it's not easy to get home. After surgery I can't go over the passes for a month, can't drive for a month, can't lift anything for a month, oh ya - and I'll be bald. Too bad the bad hair will last for a little longer than 6 weeks. I'm not allowed to put my head lower than my heart right now, but this morning when I came up with my new name GI Jess, I was dying to do a battle roll off my bed and book it to the bathroom just for kicks. Oh well. In time. 

Either way, since I have to get the tumor removed, I'll be getting the craniotomy, but I want to feel really confident and comfortable during the process. Better to make sure that we've got a great team of doctors, because I'm set on living through this!

Anyway, my diagnosis:
*I have what is believed to be a benign tumor (they won't know until they remove it and biopsy it)
*Due to its size/characteristics it's believed to have a high probability of recurrence over the span of my lifetime in different areas of my brain (MRI's for life baby!)

I feel pretty good about what's going on. I feel insanely lucky that the tumor is on the outer area of my brain, and it's believed that I won't lose much if any of my brain function (some would argue that what's left after my college days is questionable anyway, so I'd like to keep what I've got!).

6 comments:

  1. If you end up over here and need any help, or even a place to crash that doesn't involve ferries - just let me know. xo

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  2. posenjak@hotmail.comApril 15, 2010 at 4:56 PM

    I really don't know what to say, I'm so sorry Bryan and I will be praying for you. My heart aches for you and Danny, It sounds like you are in really good hands.. Jess keep the faith..

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  3. I guess I should have said who I was, Sorry wasn't thinking.

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  4. We've been all this time with you (mentally of course). Remember to stay positive, it helps a lot. I guess it's much easier to go through this with so many loving you people. You're our sunshine!

    Anyway, have you seen the news from Iceland? Maybe it's a sign from God that you shouldn't have been travelling right now? And the next time we'll see will be longer than 6 days! Allmost all airports in Europe has cancelled the flights... In Poland I'm not sure if any of the airports is working properly.

    Once again: I love and miss you a lot!

    xoxo

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  5. Jess, you are (as usual) amazing in that you are innately full of loving compassion. It does not come easily; it is actually rare and something to witness and cultivate. It is astounding to all of us that know you that you worry about us while we worry about you. This new blog is such a gift. Thank you. Thank you for your frankness and honesty and love. You make us better human beings by your being such a real human being. We love you so much. We ALL love you so much. xoxo

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  6. Andy says it looks like a meningioma, easy to resect! Good luck!

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