Cooper Vocelka

First post: Dec 8, 2009 Latest post: Dec 24, 2013
Cooper's original blog during his treatments is at

Cooper was diagnosed in December 2008 at age 13 with anaplastic ependymoma, a cancerous tumor in his brain.

Beginning Labor Day 2008 Cooper had intermittent vomiting and headaches. Docs thought GI problem or stress. This went on for 3 months, until Sherry told doctor she wanted a scan done. 

So on December 6 a MRI was done and found a 5cm mass in his brain. We were immediately sent to Children's Mercy Hospital in Kansas City.Cooper underwent 2 brain surgeries, chemo-therapy, had V-P shunt inserted, 33 rounds of Intensity-Modulated Radiation Therapy and completed treatment at the end of April 2009.

All scans were clear until 3 spots appeared in March 2011. Six weeks later they had decreased in size. In July they were stable and report said not indicative of tumor. 

September 1, 2011 he felt unwell at dinner and started to throw up. We took him to ER where he had a seizure. He was flown to CMH in KC and found out there was recurrent tumor. Sept. 23 he had surgery to remove the tumor. It was successful and the surgeon said he removed all he could see. Cooper then had three treatments of stereotactic radiation therapy.

April 19, 2012 MRI showed recurrent tumor growth. April 26 Cooper began a clinical trial of a chemo drug in hopes of stabilizing the tumor. The week of July 11 Cooper began having headaches. July 17 we went to Kansas City in anticipation of his MRI and doctor appointments the 18th.

Early morning of the 18th he woke up with headache and vomiting. TheMRI showed a lot of tumor growth and fluid buildup. July 19, 2012 Cooper underwent surgery again for a third tumor resection.The surgeons were unable to remove all the tumor. 

He was put on a clinical trial chemo treatment in hope of stopping the tumor from growing. 

October 14, 2012 Cooper had a seizure and a week later additional swelling and tumor growth were seen on an MRI. He was taken off the clinical trial. 

Cooper was then put on the chemotherapy drug VP-16 in hope of stabilizing the tumor. 

December 2012 Cooper was diagnosed with blood clots. He was treated for this and taken off the chemo. 

Cooper began showing signs of recurrent tumor (headache and vomiting)  April 9 and again May 1.

He died May 5, 2013

Sleep well our Prince

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