In Jan 95, I had just turned 29, my son was 13months old, and my wife and I had been married a little over 2 years. I was on a business trip, when I complained of not feeling well. Towards the end of the meeting, I had a Grand Mal seizure. The company EMTs were called, but they could not stop me from seizing. A medevac helicopter was called to transport me to the local medical center. On the flight, I had to be resuscitated several times. The Doctors discovered I had a lime-size mass in my right temporal lobe.I had no indication that it was there. No headaches, no slurred speech, no balance problems, nothing!
After a relatively straightforward 8 hour surgery the neurosurgeon removed the tumor along with 90% of my right temporal lobe. The tumor was a benign Grade I-II Astrocytoma. I struggle with memory problems, and path finding difficulties.
Fortunately, I was able to return to work with the Air Force as an engineer. 3 years later it grew back. It was surgically removed and found to be more aggressive, so I followed up with 6 weeks of radiation and 10 months of chemo. As a result of the radiation, I have tinnitus in my right ear and am practically deaf. I also suffer from double vision which was recently corrected by 2 eye surgeries. I still have many neurological deficits and continual ringing in my ear, but I am happy that I have survived 23years. I want to be an advocate for continued research into the causes and treatment of primary brain tumors.