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Steven Cornelius was six years old on September 12, 2017 and is a student in Mrs. Dunn's kindergarten class at Skiatook, Oklahoma. Not too long after his birthday he began to vomit daily - usually in the morning. Most of the time he was feeling OK within about an hour but then it would happen again the next day. We were trying to figure out the reason for this and had consulted with the pediatrician and even an ER doctor one afternoon, but had not found the cause. On October 27, 2017 the pediatrician sent Steven to Tulsa Children's Hospital for a CT scan and within a couple of hours we learned that he had a mass on his brain. Steven was transferred to OU Children's Hospital in Oklahoma City that evening and had an MRI the following day which revealed that the tumor was in the cerebellum area (rear base) and had spread down his spinal chord.
On November 1 the tumor near the cerebellum was successfully removed. The neurosurgeon said it was pushing on the brain stem but not attached and it was pushing on several of the nerves in that area but was not tangled in them. Pathology reports revealed it was a medulloblastoma (a rare aggressive large cell cancer that only 400 people in the United States are diagnosed with each year). After much thought, prayers, and consultation with the doctors a plan for Steven's treatment was put in place. On Monday, November 27 he began six weeks of both chemotherapy and proton radiation treatments five days each week (the entire process takes all morning and is done at two different locations about 20 minutes apart). In January he will begin a six week recuperation/healing period before beginning a six month chemotherapy session. Hopefully he will have completed the treatments by August 2018.
On November 13 he was transferred to the Children's Rehabilitation Center in Bethany, Oklahoma. The surgery has irritated some of the nerves near the cerebellum and he is not able to swallow properly. He has a feeding tube in his nose and is receiving nourishment through it. The therapists are working with him to restore swallowing. A nerve associated with vision has also been affected and he sees double sometimes which affects his balance. He has an appointment with a children's eye specialist the middle of December.
Steven's family appreciates the outpouring of love and concern they have received. Your prayers are greatly appreciated and needed as Steven travels this road to healing.