At age 6, while living in San Diego, Tyler was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia, a malignant disease (cancer) of the bone marrow and blood. Acute leukemia is a rapidly progressing disease that results in the accumulation of immature, functionless cells in the marrow and blood.
He spent the following 2 1/2 years going to the hospital for chemotherapy treatments. In June 2001, we were so excited to know that his treatment was finished and celebrated with our family and friends.
After several years in remission, on May 25, 2005 at the age of 12 years, while living near Pittsburgh, he would face it again and endure another 3 1/2 years of chemo.
He finished his chemo treatment in the summer of 2008. Things have been going well and we have been looking forward to Tyler's Senior year in high school. We have been getting prepared with school with such things like new school supplies, clothes and Senior portraits.
In September of 2009, Tyler went in for his monthly routine check-up. During his checkup, his doctor checked his neurological state and asked him to follow her finger where she pointed. When she pointed up above, the iris of his right eye was not as strong and did not go to the same level as his left. She suggested we go to an opthomalogist to see why the iris on Tyler's right eye was lower than his left during a routine neurological test.
Several days prior, he started feeling tingly sensation on the right side of his face, headaches, nausea, and neck pain. After talking on the phone with the clinic, it was suggested we go down to have a CT scan and MRI of Tyler's brain were they found a few lesions. A 15mm lesion was putting pressure on an optic nerve that controls 4 muscles to the right eye.
With his doctor on vacation the clinic still felt it was important enough for us to be seen by another doctor. The next day, after a painful spinal and bone marrow test, we found out the horrible news, the lesions were a result of leukemia in his brain.
After his last diagnosis in September 2009, he immediately started chemotherapy. It was then determined a bone marrow transplant (BMT) would be necessary. We were blessed with a perfect match donor, his sister, Chelsea. The BMT took place in March 2010.
It has been over four years since that day. Since then, Tyler has been dealing with late effects from his 6 years of chemotherapy and radiation treatments as well as Chronic Graft vs. Host Disease and was diagnosed with Pulmonary Fibrosis and Bronchiolitis Abliterands. Tyler received new lungs on November 16, 2014.....read the journal for further details