My name is Alana. I am 21 years old. I thought I would share my story because it is one that has a happy ending, and shows that being persistent is important! At age 18, I experienced weird deja vu episodes which made me dizzy, confused, and exhausted. I went back and forth to different doctors and psychologists. Finally, I was diagnosed with simple partial seizures. It was devastating news as I had to give up driving and had only gotten my license six months prior to this! The neurologist ordered an MRI which I had to wait six months for. I then went through different seizure pill medications that had nasty side effects. I felt slow and stupid as the medications fogged my memory. I had no sense of balance, I felt like puking, and I had constant headaches. Six months later, I had my MRI. My neurologist called me in one week later to break the news: "Alana you have a brain tumor." I sat there thinking, "what a relief, there is a reason and possible cure for my seizures!"
The diagnosis wasn't a surprise to me as I knew something serious was going on. It was a benign ganglioglioma which is slow growing tumor that I could have been born with. It just didn't show any symptoms until now. Brain surgery took place in February 2010. I had few complications which included double vision in my right eye for six months. After those six months, I got permission to drive again -- it was one of the best days of my life. I am currently still seizure free, but on medications in case of remission. It is an overall scary, but powerful experience that you will learn from. Your friend may be able to show off his broken leg, but how many people broadcast that they have/had a brain tumor? And that they survived or are surviving?