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Keeping the Faith




Cynthia Gayle Friesenhahn was diagnosed with a GBM brain tumor 2 years ago on the Monday after Easter. She had brain surgery that same week on Wed and they were able to take out about 95% of the tumor. Unfortunately they also removed some brain tissue that left my mom paralyzed on her left side. While working through the rehab the next few months, she continued to stay positive. Since she’s right handed she kept telling me that it could have been worse, her right side could have been paralyzed. During the rehab she started the usual therapy of radiation and chemo which she took very hard and lost a lot of weight. But I would BBQ for her and because my mom loves my BBQ, she would clean her plate and ask for seconds. The Dr.’s had only given her about 6 months to live, but for the next 1.5 years no signs of tumor growth had appeared. About 4 months ago, her tumor once again started to show signs of growth. After discussing as a family, we decided the next course of treatment would be to enroll her into one of the Clinical Trials that her Neuro-Oncologist was running here locally out of CTRC. The treatment called for an all-day IV of experimental medication and observation session. She made it through the first two monthly sessions with very little side effects. (which is why we chose this one). It has now been almost 4 months and the results we received last week showed the tumors had now shrunk by 50%. This story was hard for me to share, but I’m doing it now because the Head for the Cure walk is the first one of its kind to be here locally in San Antonio. The proceeds of the walk will go towards other Clinical Trials and research that may help others like my mom extend the time they have and eventually find a cure.