Help us fight Quinton's brain cancer!

Quinton, has been dealing with extreme dizziness and mood swings over the last year. We have visited multiple doctors to try and figure out what is going on. Towards the middle of December 2019 Quinton had an MRI of his brain done. It was discovered that he has two large tumors, in opposite hemispheres of the brain. They are fairly large (5cm and 4cm). Since then he has had more MRIs, CT scans, blood draws (19 vials so far) and a Spinal Tap. Quinton had his biopsy surgery on 1/29. Today, he had a meeting with the neurosurgeon to go over the results. It looks like Quinton has Cancer, more specifically invasive Glioblastoma. It’s rare, however, what makes this even rarer is that he has two of them in different locations. One of the things they check with this type of tumor is if this tumor is ‘streaking’. When it is streaking it means that it is spreading and invading other parts of the brain. Luckily, these tumors have not started streaking.

We have two options now. Option one is to surgically remove these tumors while they are still contained and follow it up with a year of chemotherapy and possibly radiation. Option two is to start with a year of chemotherapy and then surgically remove the tumors. Each tumor will have to be removed during a separate surgery, with a 3-4 day hospital stay and a 4-6 week recovery after each surgery. These surgeries will be very painful, as they will have to remove a large portion of skull to access the tumors. The tumor in the frontal region is in a location that is easy to get to, and our neurosurgeon feels comfortable removing it. This will be the first tumor to go and will be done at Holland Hospital. Quinton will be under general anesthesia for this procedure, and they will cut along his hairline and peel back his skin. The scar should blend into his hairline and be hardly noticeable after a while.

The second tumor is a different story. Its located towards the back of his brain. This is also where the motor region is. The motor region is located in a slightly different spot for every person; however, they are located in the same general region. They will have to do a specialty MRI to see exactly where Quinton’s motor region is and where the tumor Is in relation to that. If the tumor is far enough away from the motor region our surgeon feels comfortable performing this surgery. We are looking at two options for that then. One is that quinton would have to be awake during the surgery so they can check his motor function (speech, movement etc) during the procedure. This procedure would have to take place at UofM because Holland Hospital isn’t set up for this. Option two would be to videoconference a UofM specialist in, that strictly specializes in this area of the brain. One of the students would be in the OR and collect data and relay it to the specialist so they know if the motor region is safe. During this option Quinton could be asleep and this would take place at Holland Hospital.

However, if the MRI shows that the tumor is encroaching into the motor area or is very close to it, our surgeon may not want to touch it. If this turns out to be the case, we will have to see a specialized neurosurgeon (a specialty within a specialty) that only deals with performing surgery in this part of the brain. However, the recommended surgeon is located in California.

This is a lot of information and if you have made it this far, thank you. So, what are our next steps? Quinton and our surgeon both agreed that they would prefer to remove the tumors first, and then start chemotherapy. However, first Quinton will have to see a specialized Oncologist at UofM. She will meet with us, go ever everything and then present Quinton’s case to a team of research students. They will then collaborate with her, and together they will make a treatment recommendation. This may take a few weeks, so in the meantime its more waiting again. If they strongly recommend a year of chemotherapy first, we will have to rethink what we want to do.

There is no cure for this type of cancer, however it is treatable, and we caught it relatively early. If the tumor had started streaking Quinton would have less than 2 years left. I am kind of shell shocked by this news. We will need a lot of support in the upcoming months. Quinton will have to take FMLA leave after each surgery, and probably also during parts of the year for chemotherapy, so we will potentially be going for periods of time without income. Please keep an eye out for potential fundraisers and a GoFundMe donations page. We will also set up a meal train when the time comes and will need help with childcare. Thank you to everyone who has donated, prayed or helped in other ways so far. We truly appreciate it and a very thankful for the support.
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Lisa Adkins 
Holland, MI