Cathy – Brain Tumor

On March 9th, 2004, My Life Changed Forever

What could have been the end of my life ended up being a beginning to a new and improved self.

On that day, I was diagnosed with a meningioma brain tumor on my right frontal lobe. Two days later I underwent a successful operation to remove the tumor pressing on my brain. I would not be here today if it wasn't for my surgeon and the Neurosurgery staff at UCLA. They were impeccable throughout my stay at UCLA and extremely supportive during my recovery.

Almost 3 years later, I'm happy to say that there has been no tumor recurrence, and I'm able to live out the rest of my life without any problems. I realize that not only am I lucky to be alive, but lucky to have also been given the care and guidance from the UCLA Neurosurgery team. I will be forever grateful.

Cathy Case History

On March 9th, 2004, My Life Changed Forever

Cathy was 44-years-old in March of 2004 when she developed left upper extremity numbness and stiffness accompanied by left-sided facial spasms making it difficult for her to speak. She was seen at a local community hospital emergency room where a CT scan of her brain revealed a 3x4 right frontal mass. She was immediately transferred to the UCLA emergency department where diagnosis was confirmed with a contrasted brain MRI. Cathy was diagnosed with a meningioma.

A meningioma is most often a benign tumor in 85-95% of cases. It originates from mesoderm and infrequently invades the brain. They are more common in women than men at a ratio of 2:1.

Preoperative MRI March 2004
Nearly 2 years postoperative (2006)
Immediate Postoperative MRI
(3 days out) Nearly 2 years

Two days following admission to the hospital, Cathy underwent surgical resection of her meningioma. Complete resection of the tumor was achieved without any residual symptoms. Her hospital course was uncomplicated and she was discharged 4 days following the surgery. She did not require radiation treatment as is often the case following surgical resection.

Two years later, Cathy remains symptom-free and her most recent MRI seen below continues to show complete resection of the tumor without further recurrence. She has remained seizure-free. She is back to golfing and working full time as a TV producer. She has complete control of the motor functioning of her left arm.

By Rosemarie Lara, NP

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