Dana Palmer has a lot to live for. She, her husband and teenage son live in Colorado, but she makes the cross-state journey to The University of Kansas Hospital for medical treatment. Why? Dana has one of the deadliest types of brain tumor, glioblastoma. Most patients who have these tumors only live a matter of months following diagnosis, but Dana has survived for 11 years.
After her diagnosis, she was treated with chemotherapy and tumor-removal procedures, but the tumors always returned. Eventually, her doctors in Colorado said there was nothing further they could do for her. Dana refused to give up the fight, so she came to The University of Kansas Hospital where she met with Michael Salacz, MD, neuro-oncologist, and Paul Camarata, MD, neurosurgeon. They agreed that her tumor was inoperable using standard surgery, but they had something new that might work – a laser procedure that uses extreme heat to zap the tumor from the inside out, while sparing parts of the brain used for everyday motor function.
The procedure worked, and Dana has shown significant improvement following the treatment.
"This is unheard of for someone with that kind of tumor," said Dr. Camarata. "Perhaps one in 10,000 makes it this long. I'd say it's a miracle, I really do."
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