Welcome to our CaringBridge website for our rockstar dad. We are using it to keep family and friends updated in one place as Dad navigates surgery and the recovery process. We appreciate your support and words of hope and encouragement. We have also set up a Meal Train for the couple weeks after surgery for those who want to bring the Chef himself some tasty noms during recovery. https://mealtrain.com/k75q0v
Thank you for visiting.
On June 1st, Dad got diagnosed with a brain tumor called a meningioma--the "lottery" of brain tumors. It's categorized as "gigantic" at 5.2 cm (a large lime!) and is attached to the left side of his cerebellum--back of his skull behind and below his ear. We've named this ugly lime "Karen" and we are all ready to bid her adieu. It's slow growing, likely benign, and the doctors feel very hopeful about surgery and recovery. His symptoms range, but are primarily imbalance (we call it "sidewinding"), exhaustion, hearing loss, loss of taste, and some mental fogginess and forgetfulness ("damnit, Karen!"). We've asked, but the doctors seem to think we can't chalk up Dad's weird sense of humor and propensity to make off color jokes on Karen. Alas.
Surgery is scheduled on Thursday, June 28th at ucHealth at Anchutz. We've found an amazing neurosurgeon named Dr. Breeze who has been nothing but helpful, supportive, and kind throughout the process. Not at all how we expected to be able to describe a neurosurgeon! Dad will arrive for an MRI at 5:15am so Breeze can have a fully up-to-date image of Karen's current size and position. Then he will be taken back for the procedure, which could last anywhere from 8-12 hours. Dad will be enjoying a long Fentanyl-induced nap, but we're told Breeze listens to AC/DC in the operating room, so perhaps y'all should add it to your playlist for the day, too. We expect Dad to stay in the hospital between 3-5 days, though Dad expects to stay for only 24 hours because, as he likes to remind us, he's "in great shape" and he "[effing] hates hospitals".
Breeze doesn't expect to get all of Karen out during surgery given the size and position. However, every tumor is different so he won't know until he's in there. Once Dad is recovered from surgery, Breeze expects to do a follow-up, outpatient procedure with a Gamma Knife to blast the rest out of there. The prognosis is good, and recurrence is not typical. Breeze expects recovery to be ~4-12 weeks and for Dad to be returned to his full quality of life without the sidewinding, exhaustion, and fogginess. We can't wait to have our Old Man back with all his energy and zest for life. With his first grandkid coming any day now, we know Dad can't wait either.
We will live update here on Thursday throughout the day, but we expect it to be a long one. Bear with us and keep the Dude in your thoughts in prayers.