was diagnosed with an aggressive growing cancerous
tumor, which affects the brain stem. The actual name of the tumor is medulloblastoma.
Olivia only showed
signs/symptoms a little over 48 hours before she lapsed into a coma.
The only signs/symptoms Olivia exhibited were signs/symptoms of a stomach virus or flu-type ailment. Within a little over 62 hours
Olivia received her Angel wings.
The brain stem controls our
most basic functions: breathing, swallowing, blood pressure and heart
rate. There was no place for this tumor to go or grow.
if there was a miracle to find this tumor earlier, prognosis was still
not good. Neurosurgeons cannot even touch the brain stem because
of all the functions the brain stem provides to the human body; they
can't take any chances of affecting any of the functions of the brain.
Due to the fact the brains
of children as young as Olivia are still growing and forming,
physicians do not like to treat them with chemo or radiation due to
the fact these treatments will affect the brain development.
took all of Olivia's information including CT's, MRI's,
pathology slides, and records to The Brain Tumor Center at Duke University Medical Center, one of the member institutions of the Pediatric Brain Tumor Consortium, in
August 2003, for further
investigation and evaluation. If the physicians at Duke are able to
obtain one little bit of information to further their research, we
will be the responsible parents we are to Olivia.
to say the cancers that get most of the funding are Breast Cancer,
Lung Cancer, Prostate Cancer, and Colon Cancer because more people are affected by them.
Pediatric Brain Tumors are low on the totem pole due to the smaller
numbers of children affected. Unfortunately for us and all the
other families with children who are in our shoes.
Donating to the The Brain Tumor Center at Duke University Medical Center ensures the money will be used directly by this group of highly trained and dedicated investigators who are working together towards the common goals of understanding and curing
brain tumors in children.
Please donate in Oliviaís memory and
know that your money is going directly to fund the research of the
medulloblastoma brain tumor.
Also, the PBTC is a cooperative effort of national medical and research facilities working in conjunction with each other, for the greater good of children. Each of the institutions has extensive experience working with pediatric brain tumors. The PBTC is set up to address age specific problems and improve therapeutic outcomes for children with primary brain tumors. We canít ask for anything more than all of the researchers to work in tandem.
can be directed to:
Brain Tumor Center at Duke
University Medical Center
to: The Brain Tumor Center at Duke
Memory of Olivia Spiros
A great resource for statistical information about brain tumors can be
found at the
Central Brain Tumor
Registry of the United States.
you for helping us to keep Oliviaís memory alive. We are so
"On The Loss of A Child"