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Meghan Pawlak's Brain Surgery Fund

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In the beginning of seventh grade, the Fall of 2015, Meghan was a typical 12 year old girl. She joined the volleyball team, maintained an A average in school, played guitar and sang, and never cleaned her room. In beginning of 2016 Meghan began complaining of stuttering, twitches and headaches. We took her to her pediatrician and they recommended Dent Neurology. Between scheduling the appointment with Dent and the actual appointment her twitches became much worse and her eyes were rolling into the back of her head. She began having what she described as cloudy moments (very much like aura seizures) and the headaches became constant. Therefore we took her to Buffalo Women's and Children's Hospital. They gave her a CT scan which was clear and we were relieved.
Meghan continued to suffer from cloudy moments, her tics became more violent tremors, her legs began to give out on her, headache still constant, and now her sleep pattern is disturbed. Dent began treating her for migraines and we tried a cocktail of prescriptions, nothing could touch her pain at all! The side effects of some of these medicines are almost as bad as the reason for trying them in the first place. I requested an MRI and a 24 hour EEG. So far their best guess at what caused these symptoms would be a tic disorder, anxiety disorder, unlikely but possibly a seizure disorder, depression, and migraines/cluster headaches even though her headache never stopped (cluster/migraines occasionally have relief).
Dent reported after an MRI that there was an incidental finding of a 7mm cyst on her pineal gland. They assured us it was asymptomatic and could not be causing her symptoms. 
I immediately began researching pineal cysts online and found that yes typically they are asymptomatic however once they are symptomatic Meghan had the textbook symptoms. We found Dr. Dong Kim of the Mischer Neuroscience Institute at Memorial Hermann-Texas Medical Center and his webinar on pineal cysts.  I contacted his office and made arrangements for Meghan's medical records to be sent to him. We are traveling to Houston for a consult on September 27th. He is the only neurosurgeon in the United States who recognizes the cyst as being symptomatic and will operate on the cyst on children Meghan's age. There are some neurosurgeons that will drain the cyst, but it can refill,and you are right back where you started from.
Long story short, I know too late already, we have a lot of medical bills. We have a lot more coming up in the next couple of months and anticipate that our co-pay for the surgery will be $50,000 or more. The bottom line is Meghan will not be able to live a normal life, even attending school without this surgery. It is humbling to have to ask for help, but I know that it will take a lot of people to help this wonderful and kind girl be able to live a healthy and pain-free life. Anything that you can donate will be  appreciated. Thank you for taking the time to read this and for helping our sweet girl.


  • Laura Ptak
    • $15 
    • 7 yrs


Erin Griffin
Buffalo, NY

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