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May 11, 2017 Latest post:
Sep 11, 2017
The short story is, Mike Summers has a mass in his brain that that needs to be removed or shrunk. He is currently up at the Neuro Surgery ICU at OHSU in stable condition as of Wednesday night (5/10).
The slightly longer story is . . . Monday afternoon Mike was having some trouble with his balance and was quite confused when Joyce returned home. Mike decided to take the trash down their long driveway in spite of his weakness and balance issues. When he hadn't returned in a reasonable amount of time, she looked down the driveway and saw him on his back unable to get up. Joyce ran to his aid and a neighbor helped shuffle him back to the house. Wide eyed, shaking and disoriented, Joyce decided to take him to ER. We waited in the waiting room for nearly 3 hrs before finally being admitted. A cat scan revealed a mass in his brain just above his spine that would disrupt balance among other things. It appears it has been growing for quite some time and finally ran out of room in his brain. It has also caused additional swelling that must be reduced. He was transported to OHSU around 1 a.m. Monday morning. They inserted a tube in his skull to drain the fluid and did an MRI to get more clarity of the mass. By 9 a.m. he was somewhat improved and showing signs of strength and even a bit of Mike humor we all know and love. We spoke with the nurse Wednesday morning and she reported him as stable - not improved, but no worse. The draining continues at a rate they are comfortable with, but they have not ordered a CT Scan as of this writing that will show them how much the swelling has reduced as a result of this draining. He has trouble answering questions like where he is at, what year it is, or even who we are.
When Joyce asked him who she was on Tuesday, he said she was "a pretty lady". She said thanks, but who am I and he responded "my wife". Other times he was unable to identify us. This is not uncommon as patients wax and wane throughout this process.
One of Kris and Christina's old neighbors is a spinal surgeon up at OHSU (and his wife is a transplant surgeon up there as well - quite the power couple). Kris connected with him Tuesday night and the doctor contacted the surgeon who is in charge of Mike's Surgery. He says he knows him really well and likes him alot.
The Surgeon who will be performing the removal is Dr. Justin Cetas. He has been doing this for 10 years. Most likely it will be done on Thursday (5/11). They want to get the swelling down as much as possible prior to surgery. They won't remove the entire mass all at once because they will want to test it first. Once they know what the mass is, they can then figure out the next course of action. It will be a long recovery process.
The mass is way down deep in the middle of his head, just above his spinal area. There are 4 ventricals in our brains and his mass is in the 3rd ventrical. The depth of the mass and what it's located near makes the removal process a bit more challenging, but we remain optimistic and confident we will get the Mike we all know and love back in the not too distant future.
We know you all want to help and be there for us and we thank you for your love and prayers. Our faith is strong and our God is big and we strive for His perspective in the midst of this trial.