Amy Woodard

First post: Apr 29, 2018 Latest post: Aug 26, 2018
On Wednesday 4/4/18 Amy was at work when she experienced a series of symptoms which included visual distortion, speech distortion, nausea, sweating, and a headache. She later was seen in the emergency room at Gundersen Health System where a CT scan was done to rule out possible migraine with aura. CT scan revealed a mass on her left temporal lobe of her brain. Thus she underwent a MRI to obtain better imaging of this mass.  Thursday 4/5/18 (The day Amy's life was change forever) the Neurosurgeon read the MRI and explained that from the looks of it the mass was at least a grade 2 tumor and could possibly be removed with radiation and chemotherapy to follow. At this time it was highly recommended to have a biopsy of the tumor to get more information as to the type, grade and extent. On Friday 4/6/18 (the day Amy's family and friends will never forget as the ball didn't only drop but came in like a wrecking ball) Amy underwent a brain biopsy. Following the biopsy the Neurosurgeon informed her and her family based on preliminary report she has a high grade Glioma that is aggressive and requires aggressive treatment. At this time her and her family were under the impression surgery (which he would do awake to monitor her ability to function) would be risky as it's located in the speech center of her brain and there would be a high risk of her loosing her speech and or being able to comprehend what is being said to her therefore, she would require aggressive chemotherapy and radiation to extend her life. From the sounds of it, it did not seem as though surgery was an option related to the risks involved.  On Thursday 4/12/18 Amy went to a follow-up appointment with the Neurosurgeon at Gundersen who unfortunately did not have anything further to add to her diagnosis as the pathology was being sent out for further testing. This testing would show what type of Glioma she has along with whether or not it's receptive to chemo and radiation. She was told she had to wait until 4/23/18 for the final results. 

In the meantime with the help of many family/friends we were able to obtain a second opinion at Mayo Health System in Rochester on 4/19/18 . There she completed a 2 hour functional MRI and was seen by a Neurologist and Neurosurgeon. She was informed that they had not yet received final pathology but did not require the final pathology to know that this tumor would need to be surgically removed. She was informed this tumor originated in the brain. It most likely started out as a grade 2 tumor and over time developed into an aggressive grade 3 tumor. How long she has had it is unknown. She was informed the brain is like a one way street it lets tumors in but very rarely does it let them out, so metastasis is low. The Neurosurgeon at Mayo is confident he can proceed with an asleep surgery and remove the bulk of the tumor.  Then chemotherapy and radiation to follow.  We are under the impression radiation and chemotherapy alone would extend her life by years but surgical removal before hand would assist in extending her life well beyond that. At this time Amy is taking the weekend to be with her family and to think things over. She will then make her decision most likely on Monday 4/23/18. She hopes to hear more from Gundersen on Monday 4/23/18 regarding her final pathology and the reasons there is such a difference in opinion, but as of right now we live day by day with god in our corner, we pray and hold each other close with love. 

Amy will tell you "I will be just fine. God is with me". She explained that she had 34 minutes to pray to god while in the MRI on 4/4/18 and when she came out the weight of this diagnosis along with her fears were lifted from her. Amy has grown strong in her faith and knows god is beside her and accompanying  her each day through this journey. She is an inspiration and strong and is ready to fight this thing head on with gods help and the support, love, and prayer of her family and friends.