Aaron's Fight with Brain Cancer

$59,278 of $50,000 goal

Raised by 559 people in 8 months
Created November 11, 2017
This page is dedicated to my best friend and brother, Aaron Klamut who has been diagnosed with Grade 4 Glioblastoma/Glioblastoma Multiforme (GBM ) Brain Cancer.

This rare form of malignant brain cancer is not only aggressive, but incurable and it is terminal.

The prognosis is grim, however with the proper care and the right plan of treatment, we can maximize the time he has with us. With the advancement in medicine and new GBM treatments and procedures (inlcuding clinical trials) we are hoping and praying for the best possible scenario. 

Aaron needs to defy the statistics and survive this. 

The odds are against us all in this battle, the obstacle is an immovable however we are determined to look at it in the face and yell to this evil, that if it must take Aaron down this path, we will not allow him to go quietly and without a fight. 

We are looking to raise funds to support this battle and to help in this tragic battle that has been forced upon Aaron.  The goal is to get the very treatment available, no matter what or where. 

All donations and funds will be used to help cover all related medical treatment and support that is not covered by insurance. Aaron is a self-employed craftsman and is now unable to work; donations will also assist in covering basic necessities and living expenses.  All excess funds will be donated to brain cancer funds and research.

Who is Aaron?

I want to tell you about Aaron. He is a son, friend, brother and overall an amazing person.  Aaron is a warm soul who brings light and smiles to those he touches and uniquely is someone you will never forget. He is a selfless, caring indivdual who loves life and one thing anyone would ever tell you about him is, he does life with kindness and heart.  

Well versed in the arts, this amazing man has traveled the world in nearly every continent, speaks three different languages (trained linguist with multipe degrees from Ohio State), can play multiple instruments, and has even toured with bands across the  county, and in Europe. As a humble man and kind soul, he would be the first to offer a stranger assistance or help anyone in need if he had the means to do so. 

By trade Aaron is a expert custom craftsman who can create magic with his hands and a hammer. Well known for restoring Victorian homes, he also crafts amazing pieces from restored wood, many of which can be found in the Columbus area.  You've most likely enjoyed a beer on a bar he built, sat on a chair he made, and looked at something he made somewhere and said "man, that is awesome."

He also is a tournament pinball player, yes really.  

If you ever met Aaron, you'd instantly smile. He is humble, kind, and a caring individual who warms the world and those he touches.  The type of person that you'd want to know and love, a genuine heart that is a rare find. 

As only children, we grew up together, doing everything and anything since the day we met in afterschool programs at 6 years old in Lakewood, Ohio. We were inseaperable, having each other growing up; both only children raised by single mothers (he having his dad and me my grandmother). As children and into our teens, we most likely spent half the time with each other. Our days were spent playing with Transformers, watching MTV, riding skateboards, and our nights playing video games and "raiding the fridge" for snacks. Polar opposites in personality we balanced each other out, however somehow were the same - Yin and Yang.  As adults, I moved to California to chase dreams and he moved to Columbus, Ohio for college.

Aaron is my very best friend, the god-father of my son, and someone who helped shape who I am as a person. Our families considered each other brothers growing up, and we always had each other.  When my wife became pregnant, he came and visited - when my son was born - he came to meet this new addition in my life and his godson. On vacations Aaron would come with us and is part of my family now as he always has been in the past. 

When I found out of this situation and then heard he was going in for a biopsy, I jumped on a plane flew from California to Columbus.  However the night before I was scheduled to fly out, they pushed up his biopsy and surgery. I knew he would be alright but I needed to see it with my eyes. 

Upon landing, I drove straight to the hopsital and they were in the process of changing Aaron into a new room. In that new room is where I waited to surprise him as they did the transfer...shorts and t-shirt in an empty room waiting for my best friend to be brought in. It was shocking to see what he was going through and even more painful as this is now a reality, but also relieved when I saw him.

With a heavy heart and tears in my eyes, I am starting this page on behalf of my brother.

Unbalanced Weakness.

In Septmeber, Aaron began to have a sense of unexplained weakness in the legs. In mid October, the sense of weakness had increased to the point that while on a job at work, he had to stop working and went home immediately for rest.

The pain had reached the point where it was unbearable, Ianna (Aaron's deloved) took him to the  Affordable Care Health Clinic for a blood test to see if he was deficient in anything and evaluation.  Blood tests came back normal, but his walking became worse so a MRI was ordered.

Thank you to the staff at Affordable Care Health Clinic for being amazing for getting this process expedited, a special tthank you to Diann Nelson-Houser, CNP and Becky for being so incredibly empathetic and helpful.

MRI and Discovery

On October 21st he began experiencing severe headaches and his balance became even worse.

The MRI was conducted on the 31st and the doctor who read the MRI immediately called the clinic which called Aaron in for an emergency consultation. Aaron was told to go to the Riverside Methodist Emergency room immediately.

The doctor who read the scans said that there were several masses in the brain that might be multiple sclerosis and tumors. The MRI showed multiple masses with one prominent mass in the center of the brain (specifically located in the center of the Corpus Collosum), between the two halves of the brain. Heartbreaking and shocking, the image below is the actual MRI taken.

A second, more detailed MRI discarded the possibility of MS but couldn't tell much about the state of the tumors, so a biopsy was ordered for November 6th.

Confirmed Cancer.

Due to the condition Aaron was in, his surgery and biopsy was moved up in date to the 3rd. Brain surgery was conducted, the surgery was successful and biposy was completed. We waited for results patiently and on Novemeber 7th, the doctors came in to tell us that indeed it was a malignant tumor and Stage 4 Glioblastoma. Surrounded by family, the news crushed all of us, we had received the only news we feared.  The doctors detailed to us the condition and the gravity of the situation informing us that we must act quickly as it is an aggressive cancer. 

Round 1 - FIGHT! The battle begins. 

With the love of his beloved Ianna, parents, the hundreds of AMAZING friends and those he touched through the years, Aaron is finding strength for the battle. Our dear friend, just days after surgery and receiving the news, was undeterred and stood up on his own and slowly walked to the restroom.

On the day I flew back to California, we had some time to talk and I told him, this is THE FIGHT.  You must fight for those you love, fight for time and fight for your life, "you aren't going anywhere and better fight for everyone who cares about you."

This page is a call to arms to support for Aaron, the financial support will be used for necessities and all other costs that insurance doesn't cover. The costs to travel to hospitals, for opinions, and any related medical treatment.  Any excess amount will be donated to brain cancer funds and research.

If you do not have the means to donate, please show your support by sending best wishes and prayers, we are reaching for miracles and praying with eveyrthing we have...please join us, someone, somewhere may just hear you as well.

Thank you to everyone involved over these past few weeks, your support is greatly appreciated. A HUGE thank you for all the kind care for Aaron to the entire staff and doctors at OhioHealth and Riverside Methodist Hospital in Columbus. We are lucky to have your kind care, empathy, and attention. 

More than anything Aaron needs your love and support. 

The power of love is something that medicine cannot gauge and measure. The power of belief and hope is something that can't be explained, the word miracle itself exists in the dictionary for reason. The fighting spirit is within all of us and we need to tap into this for Aaron and give him all the love and strenth we can for this battle.

We need to believe and need your strenth, whoever you are please send prayers and wishes for our dear friend as this fight begins.

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Newest update from Ianna

"For the past week, Aaron has been in a lot of pain throughout the day, despite all the pain meds he's on. He had a palliative care (pain management) appointment but it wasn't until the 20th of this month. We couldn't stand to see him in such pain so we called Ohio Health Hospice to come to the home and help us manage his pain. They'll be coming tomorrow for an assessment. I know hospice is a scary word, but we're trying to see it as an alternative to palliative care."

"Our biggest concern right now is trying to keep his pain at a minimum. He hasn't been able to do any physical therapy because his headaches are debilitating. Hopefully his pain will be managed well enough so I'm able to start him on some exercises again. The Optune helmet was causing discomfort so he asked me to remove it last weekend and he won't be using it again. We tried to get him into a clinical trial at Duke where they inject poliovirus into the tumors, but unfortunately he doesn't qualify. Wanted to update you all and send you all our deepest love and immense gratitude."

- Ianna
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Update from Ianna!

"Yesterday the doctor decided to stop all infusion treatments because they were causing liver damage. Instead we'll be trying something else called Optune. It's a helmet of sorts that sends out low-intensity electric fields that interfere with cancer cell division and may slow the division down or even stop it. It's a pretty mild treatment (versus something like radiation or chemo) with hardly any side effects. He'll have to wear the device for 18-20 hours a day. He can do all this at home, so no need to go to the hospital every day or week.

The choices of what to do next were either this (Optune) or to stop all possible treatments and keep him as comfortable as possible.

His headaches have been more frequent and more severe, but he has new medication to help with the pain and frequency so that has been going well these last couple of days. He still has a great appetite, has physical therapy twice a week and is getting stronger, and is sleeping pretty well too."

Ianna's parents Peter and Mary were also in town visiting for the last two weeks, which was a great boost to everyone from helping hands and hearts, to the additional love and support.

Thank you for all the messages to this page for Aaron and the wishes!
Nurse Maria @ the infusion clinic :)
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Aaron is back home from the hospital after being admitted for severe pain breathing (see prior post). Full update from Ianna below...

"The ultrasounds of his legs showed clots there too, so that's the source of his lung clots. Ultrasounds of his heart didn't show any strain and scans of his head don't show any bleeding, so that's good news. Blood clots are fairly common in cancer patients. He'll be on blood thinners and I'll have to administer them as injections twice daily. He just had an X-ray in his belly as it's distended and they're worried it might be surrounded with fluid. Aaron really just wants to be at home, but the doctors are recommending he go to a care facility so they can give him proper physical therapy so he can get a little stronger and hopefully be able to stand. He gets morphine for pain every three hours, which he was excited about as he's never had it! He's still in good spirits but grumpy about getting bugged every hour or so by nurses and doctors and social workers and technicians. We'll be here for at least another day, but if he'll be going to a care facility we'll likely be here till Friday. "

Results are back...

"His tummy X-ray just showed gassiness, so good news. Next up is planning on either taking him home, or getting him to a care facility for a while so he can buff up them leg muscles so it's easier for me to move him around at home."

Back home and latest updates

"Aaron was discharged today and is at home and happy! He didn't want to go to a care facility so we're having physical therapists come to our house to help him gain strength. He has blood clots in his legs and his lungs and I'll have to give him blood thinner injections indefinitely. One of his cancer therapies can increase the risk of bleeding around the tumors so he'll be stopping that therapy. He'll still be taking the immunotherapy for now. They also found some fluid in his lungs which suggests the onset of pneumonia, so he's on antibiotics for a week as a precaution. He's just so happy to be at home and that makes us happy! Love you all" - Ianna
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"Hi y'alls! Aaron was taken to the OSU James ER today with severe pain while breathing. They did scans and found pulmonary embolisms (blood clots) in both lungs. He'll be here overnight at least, not sure for how long tho. Now he's snoozing a bit, they'll be taking ultrasounds of his legs to make sure the clots aren't traveling from there. He's still making the nurses laugh, so that's good! Just wanted to keep you all updated." - Ianna
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$59,278 of $50,000 goal

Raised by 559 people in 8 months
Created November 11, 2017
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