Homer Glen Woman’s Brain Tumor Safely Removed with Tag-Team Surgery
Last summer, Sue (who wishes to remain anonymous) experienced numbness on the right side of her face that lasted for over 10 minutes. She knew something wasn’t right and headed to the Silver Cross Emergency Department. She was diagnosed with a seizure and started on medication immediately.
A CT Scan of her brain led to the discovery of a large tumor located inside her skull coming from the covering of her brain. A meningioma is a benign tumor of the covering the brain, which classically grows very slowly but can lead to severe headaches, seizures, and sometimes paralysis.
“I knew that they were good,” said the 54-year-old Homer Glen woman. “They explained what was going to happen every step of the way.”
Meningioma’s can be very vascular meaning they have robust blood flow making for surgery to be complicated. That’s why, Dr. Shownkeen, who is the medical director of the Silver Cross’ neurointerventional program, first embolized the tumor-effectively stopping the blood supply to the tumor making it safer for its removal. A few days later, Dr. Khan, one of Northwestern’s two neurosurgeons at Silver Cross Hospital, performed a craniotomy. With the tumor less vascular, he was able to completely and safely remove the tumor and replace the skull.
Sue woke up from surgery on August 22, 2016 without any problems and after a successful recovery went home four days later. “My stay was wonderful—from the food to the nurses, everything was top-notch. I couldn’t have been treated nicer,” said Sue. “My Neuro Team visited me daily.”
Sue continued her recovery with outpatient speech therapy once a week over four weeks at The Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago at Silver Cross Hospital. “The doctors told me that it could take six months to fully heal; however, I was doing great after six weeks and was cleared to go back to work,” said Sue. “I am so pleased that words can hardly describe how it turned out. My treatment was phenomenal.”
“It was a pleasure to take care of Sue. I am happy to say we have the full complement of care necessary to manage any neurologic disorder at Silver Cross and look forward to continuing to help patients like Sue”, says Dr. Khan.
Dr. Khan adds that if you experience, headaches, seizures, blurred vision, weakness in the legs or arms, numbness or speech problems, seek help immediately as these are the signs of a stroke or a neurological disorder. Call 911 or go to the nearest emergency department. Silver Cross Hospital is a designated Primary Stroke Center and can diagnosis, stabilize, treat and recover patients on the New Lenox campus.