Welcome! It means so much to us to know that others remember Andrew with us. Andrew's was a brief life fully lived, and we love hearing how he has inspired others to live with smiles on their faces and joy in their hearts. We look forward to the day we will see him again!
Andrew was diagnosed with diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma on October 26, 2007, days after his mother was diagnosed with breast cancer. He lived and laughed in spite of brain cancer for over 25 months before he took his final breath on earth at 1:00 am on December 4, 2009.
The first brain tumor symptom is noticed by a physician during a regular exam.
October 25, 2007
Andrew is taken to the Emergency Room at Sparrow Hospital in Lansing and admitted to the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit after a CT Scan and an MRI show a large area of swelling in the brainstem.
October 26, 2007
Andrew's parents receive the diagnosis of pontine glioma and learn that the prognosis is grim. He has six weeks of radiation treatment to shrink the tumor and relieve symptoms.
December 26, 2007
Andrew is determined to be ineligible for antineoplaston treatment at the Burzynksi Clinic in Houston, Texas. (It has not been long enough since radiation, and the clinic can not prove tumor progression.) His care is transferred to Dr. Burzynksi's private practice, and he starts a sporadic combination of sodium phenylbutyrate, Nexavar and Tarceva.
Andrew's parents decide to stop the treatment recommended by Dr. Burzynski after conducting research and realizing that the children they could find who had been treated at the Burzynski Clinic for pontine glioma had not survived.
Andrew's parents begin to understand the importance of involving a neuro-oncologist (a specialist in pediatric brain tumors) and take him to see Dr. Stew Goldman at Children's Memorial Hospital in Chicago, Illinois.
April 22, 2008
Andrew sees neuro-oncologist Dr. Kathy Warren at the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, Maryland, and begins participation in her imaging study there. (This is a non treatment study open to children with brain tumors.) She is the first physician to call Andrew's tumor a diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma (DIPG).
September 11, 2008
Andrew's parents learn (as a result of an MRI with multi-voxel spectroscopy at NIH) that there is an area of concern in the tumor.
October 30, 2008
Andrew is hospitalized due to headaches, and a scan shows that the tumor is growing. Andrew's parents and physicians settle on a combination of Vincristine, Irinotecan and Temodar in an attempt to slow the progression of the tumor.
The tumor continues to progress. Andrew's parents and physicians settle on Temodar (full dose) in an attempt to slow tumor growth.
The tumor continues to grow. Andrew's parents and physicians settle on Avastin and Irinotecan in a final attempt to slow progression of the tumor.
Andrew's parents and physicians are surprised when a scan shows significant response to therapy.
July 22, 2009
Andrew leaves Sparrow Hospital after living inpatient for 5 months and 2 weeks due to complications from the combination of Decadron and Avastin. He has been wheelchairbound since March as a result of those complications.
It is determined that Andrew's tumor is no longer responding to therapy.
Andrew makes one final trip to NIH where he chooses, with the support of his parents and his physician, to stop treatment.
December 2, 2009
Andrew becomes painful early in the afternoon. There is swift intervention to make him comfortable, and he falls asleep.
December 4, 2009
Andrew draws his final breath on earth surrounded by his family and four close friends at 1:00 am. His tumor is donated for research to the neuro-oncologist Andrew loved at the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, Maryland.