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Jack’s Story

To join Jack & his family in the fight against pediatric brain cancer please go to:

WWW.TEAMJACKFOUNDATION.ORG

On April 22, 2011, Jack was life flighted to Children’s Hospital Omaha after suffering a life threatening seizure. An MRI showed a lesion in the left temporal lobe. Doctors feared HSV Encephalitis, a life threatening brain virus. A rigorous 21-day treatment followed. Later testing revealed our worst fear--a brain tumor.

On May 20, 2011, a tumor resection surgery was attempted.  Only a small amount of the tumor was removed.  The remaining tumor was declared inoperable.  Pathology revealed a cancerous glioma. During this time, Jack battled the onset of Secondary Epilepsy--a condition caused by the tumor.  After April 22, Jack suffered frequent partial seizures, sometimes upto 10 a day. The seizures persisted despite high dosages of two anti-seizure medications.

Specialists at Children's Hospital Boston were consulted in August 2011. Pediatric Neurosurgeon Liliana Goumnerova indicated that she felt she could likely safely resect the tumor, and at the same time achieve seizure relief by using intraoperative electrocorticography.  Jack's 2nd brain surgery in 5 months occurred at Boston on October 10th.  The second surgery went great.  After surgery, Dr. Goumnerova came out of the operating room smiling.  Dr. Goumnerova removed a golf ball sized tumor.  Nearly all of the tumor was removed, with the possible exception of a small amount of residual near the brain stem.  Thankfully, since the second surgery, Jack has not suffered a single seizure and is doing great clinically.  

In January, Jack traveled to Boston for his first follow-up MRI.  On January 11, 2012, the MRI looked great as the "spot" showed no sign of growth.  Jack's neurologist then aggressively began tapering Keppra.  By March 22, 2012, Jack was down to one anti-seizure medicine.

A 6-month post operation MRI on April 18, 2012 in Boston surprisingly revealed a progression of the "spot." The "spot" is inoperable.  Doctors have now decided that chemotherapy was the next best therapy. Accordingly, Jack had a port surgery on April 26, 2012 and began 60 weeks of chemotherapy on April 27, 2012, at CH Omaha.  His chemotherapy will continue until approximately July 2013.

Jack and his family have received incredible support.  Jack has a very loving family and community.  Nebraska's Rex Burkhead has also helped make people aware of Jack's fight by so graciously wearing a "Team Jack - Pray" wristband during the 2011 and 2012 football seasons. We thank God for his involvement in Jack's life, as well as the thousands of supporters across the country.  God is good.

Jack and his family gives thanks and praise to Jesus for all of Jack's prayer warriors, supporters, and followers.  God Bless you all for your touching and overwhelming support.  

Love,

Andy, Bri, Jack, Ava & Reese

Latest Journal Update

Medical Update from Boston (December 2014 version)

Today was a busy day in Boston for Jack and Mom. Jack had an MRI this morning and then a meeting with his pediatric neuro-oncologist (Dr. Susan Chi) and then over to cardiology for an EKG and echocardiogram.
 
Earlier today we were comforted by one of our favorite medical words in the brain tumor business -- STABLE.  Today's MRI, as compared to the August and October scans, shows good stability.  This is very good news. After coming home from Boston on prior trips, filled with the uncertainty of "where do we go from here", you really can't put into words how good this feels.  Truly, this is all any of us wanted for Christmas.

As for the heart testing, we have not yet heard from the cardiologist. The blood clot, we think, based upon a prior scan and further consultation, may be gone.  However, we are hoping to confirm that with today's echo and further testing. Obviously these scans are being done to monitor for other possible concerns, as well.  We will keep you posted.

Thank you everyone for keeping Jack in your prayers. This will be Jack's 4th Christmas since being diagnosed with a brain tumor.  Regrettably, there are so many kids that aren't able to say that. We rejoice at his gift of life and hope and pray for all of those other kiddos who we have met along the way and mean so much to us.  Please keep all childhood cancer families in your prayers this Christmas season.

Take care and have a Merry Christmas. We love you all.

Best,

Andy, Bri, Jack, Ava & Reese

PS -- The photo was a screen shot of a "Facetime" chat between Boston and Atkinson.  Dad and Jack were trying to see who could make a goofier face.  Jack won.  Dad is such a dork.

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Comments

50 Comments

Teresa Markley
By Teresa & Steve Markley
Keeping you all in our prayers. Hugs and kisses!!
Deb Arends
By Deb Arends
So happy to hear STABLE! Merry Christmas to your family!
Susan Heanue
By sue hamsa
Such a blessing to read this good news today.
Kimberly Schrader
By Kimberly Schrader
Merry Christmas Hoffman Family!! So happy the news is good. God bless you all!
Sheila Griess
By Sheila Griess
Great news during this Advent Season. Praise God and may you all have a great Christmas!
Jackie Adams
By Brad and Jackie Adams
AWESOME news!!!! Merry Christmas to all of your family!!! God is GREAT!!!!!
WENDY KELLY
By
God is Good! Merry Christmas to the Hoffman Family!
Sean Fritz
By Sean F
Keeping Jack and your whole family in our prayers. Happy Holidays!
June Colgrove
By Bobette Colgrove
Praise be to God! Have a Joyous Christmas! May God hold each of you in His comforting arms this Christmas and continue to bless both Jack and each of you during this holy season and in the years to come.
Judy Krysl
By Judy Krysl
Four special Christmases. I am so pleased to be praying and praising and laughing over the Father-Son Facetime faces. Oh, I am rejoicing in prayer for Bri. What an exhausting and wonderful day it must have been!