My Husband's journey with Glioblastoma
I have been following discussions in this Brain Tumor group for several months and decided it was time to share my husband, Steve's, journey with a GBM diagnosis. On 10/25/2019, after one short week of headaches and some confusion….thinking Tuesday was Friday, starting to take the wrong exit off the highway….I asked him to see a doctor. On Friday, 10/25, he went to the ER where they did a cat scan and found a mass in his brain. An MRI confirmed a right frontal lobe mass. Surgery was performed on 10/28/2019 after which we learned he had Glioblastoma (WHO Grade IV), IDH1-Wildtype with MGMT promoter methylation absent. The surgeon said he had removed the entire tumor, which luckily did not affect any functional areas of the brain. He underwent six weeks of radiation M-F, along with daily Temozolomide chemo pills. He had no adverse reactions to either. Unfortunately, an MRI on 01/24/2020 showed a recurrence. We were told that because his tumor was not methylated, the temozolomide often does not have success. So Steve underwent another surgery on 2/13/2020, where once again the entire tumor was removed. The plan was to start maintenance chemo pills…but still temozolomide. However, swelling in the brain took Steve back to the ER where it was determined he was taken off steroids too quickly. To our shock, an MRI taken on 03/08/2020 showed the tumor had returned yet again!!! We said "no more surgery" as it obviously keeps coming back. It was decided to try the Optune Cap through Novocure and receive every other week treatments of Avastin, a chemo drip. I also heard about a book called "Radical Remission"…How to Beat Cancer Against All Odds, written by Kelly Turner. The best chapter in the book is the one on diet. I learned that "sugar feeds cancer". My shopping now has me reading labels. The book says to avoid anything with added sugars. Don't eat fast food, or processed meats. I buy everything I can find with low sodium or no salt added. We eat lots of fruits and vegetables and only sprouted grain bread. The book also recommended drinking Essiac Tea, which is made of eight organic herbs that are pesticide and chemical free. Check the website http://www.discount-essiac-tea.com to read the multiple testimonials from individuals with cancer. Steve has had MRI's on 06/01/2020 and 09/18/2020 each showing a continual decrease in the tumor size. On 03/08/2020 it measured 5.8 cm x 4.7 cm. On 09/18/2020 it measured 2.3 cm x 1.6 cm. He continues to wear the Optune Cap more than 85% of the time, plus the Avastin, the Essiac Tea, and the diet and lots of prayers from family and friends. We aren't sure exactly what is working so aren't willing to stop anything. We remain cautiously optimistic.