Aloha! In April of 2009, my wife, Linda, was diagnosed with Glioblastoma after undergoing a craniotomy in Honolulu. Living on Maui we had difficulty understanding treatment alternatives, consequences, and impacts of this cancer, and generally how to get the best possible care for her.
In May of 2009, Linda’s cousin, Char Smick, referred us to Dellann Elliott, who collected our information and put us in touch with, among others, Dr. Patrick Wen. After reviewing her records, Dr. Wen called me to discuss possible treatment options, and asked if Linda would be willing to meet him and/or Dr. Foltz in Seattle to examine the possibility of a follow-up craniotomy. He then interviewed our neurosurgeon in Honolulu and called me back to advise that he felt Linda had gotten excellent treatment there. He suggested that after the initial prescribed radiation and chemotherapy treatments, we should request that she be given Avastin, which studies had shown to extend the life of Glioblastoma patients by months, but had not yet been FDA approved for brain cancer.
By August of 2009, Avastin had received FDA approval and Linda started receiving infusions every two weeks at the local Kaiser facility on Maui. She continues to receive them to this date (October 2012) and will continue for the rest of her life. Linda’s spirits are excellent, as is her quality of life, considering the limitations imposed by this cancer. Almost three and one-half years after initial diagnosis, she is happy and productive, thanks, in part, to assistance from The Chris Elliott Fund/The Elliott Foundation.
We are extremely grateful for the care shown by Dellann Elliott, Dr. Wen, and Dr. Foltz. The initial support and reassurances offered, along with the timely treatment recommendations have given us the best possible outcome after the initial devastating news.