My son James Camara was recently, suddenly diagnosed with a malignant brain tumor. After moving to Los Angeles to live with me and turn a new page in this chapter of his young life, James began to experience a range of strange symptoms including severe and persistent headaches, trouble balancing and walking, weakness on the right side of his body, and slurred speech. About a month ago we made an appointment for him to get checked out by a neurologist, but the soonest they could see him was mid-March. In the meantime, the headaches and weakness on the right side of his body became debilitating, so he finally relented and went to the ER. There a CT scan confirmed the presence of a large mass in the center of his cerebellum, which had begun to grow into his brain stem--the center for processing signals from the brain to all parts of his body.
James was tranferred to Long Beach Memorial Hospital and within one week they had performed a complex and highly risky craniotomy to remove the tumor, which they confirmed as a medulloblastoma--a highly agressive malignant brain tumor. The surgery was a great success, and the doctors believe they have removed all of the tumor from James's brain. He is breathing on his own, and he can see, hear, swallow, and speak, none of which were certain outcomes of the surgery, so we feel amazingly, gratefully blessed.
James is still in the ICU and will have to stay at the hospital for some time as he recovers from the surgery. He will also begin to undergo extensive radiation and chemotherapy treatments, most likely beginning next week. What his recovery will fully entail and how long it will take are unknowns to us at this point. What is known is that his medical expenses have already run into the hundreds of thousands of dollars. James was signed up for Medical upon being admitted to the hospital, but it is unclear exactly how much of his mounting medical expenses will be covered. James will also be unable to work for an unknown period of time, though we remain hopeful that he will eventually make a full recovery, be able to return to work, and live a full and satisfying life as any 26-year-old should.
Any amount that you can contribute to help cover daily living expenses while James recovers from this ordeal would be deeply, deeply appreciated.
- Gary Glaesemann
- Anthony Boatman
- Molly Doan
- Alex Gerber
- Justin Jones
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