Sharing Mayo Clinic

Stories from patients, family, friends and Mayo Clinic staff

Archive for November 26th, 2012

Runner travels “cross-country” for experienced tumor-removal team

Posted on November 26th, 2012 by Margaret Shepard

Amy Haberman and Dr. Leibovich

Amy Haberman and Dr. Bradley Leibovich after the Twin Cities Marathon

Amy Haberman was diagnosed with a noncancerous tumor the size of a small football, lodged near her left kidney and colon. Her local physicians advised her to look for a medical center that specializes in teams of surgeons who can remove large tumors that have nerve involvement and a significant blood supply. While the tumor was slow growing, it was fatal if not removed.

Amy traveled from her home in California to Minnesota to meet with a team of Mayo Clinic doctors, including urologist Bradley Leibovich, M.D.

"We'd performed similar surgery before. We were optimistic we could remove Amy's tumor," says Dr. Leibovich. "Mayo Clinic has a large, collaborative surgical practice, and we are experienced at handling difficult cases referred from around the world." Read the rest of this entry »

“Hopeful life” after surgery to remove rare brain tumor

Posted on November 26th, 2012 by Margaret Shepard

Jacob Harpel holding a guitar

Jacob Harpel is back to doing what he loves — including playing music.

When 7-year-old Jacob Harpel was diagnosed with a rare brain tumor, doctors told his parents, Koreen and Paul, that it was most likely noncancerous (benign) and slow-growing and recommended a wait-and-see approach to treatment. But with the tumor causing seizures and dizzy spells, the Harpels decided to seek a second opinion.

After extensive testing, a pediatric neurologist at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn., recommended removing the tumor.

"We were told that with surgery, there was a 50 percent chance Jacob could have permanent peripheral vision deficits looking down and to the right, and a 50 percent chance he'd experience speech or comprehension deficits or both," says Koreen.

The wait-and-see approach carried risks of its own. Read the rest of this entry »