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When Therapy Ends
Dr. Goldman and Tom Ford
Tom Ford is 13, and he has spent half of his life trying to beat a brain tumor. The tumor was discovered when he was just 6. Although it wasn't cancerous, the mass put life-threatening pressure on his brain, so Tom had a series of surgeries to cut away the recurring growth.
The doctor said, 'There's a mass on your son's brain.' Our world changed immediately. We went from one life to another. -- Mary Ford, Tom's mother
A few years after Tom's tumor was found, his family moved to Chicago. That's when Jim and Mary Ford brought their son to Children's Memorial. Tom's new care team proposed radiation and chemotherapy to shrink the tumor.
The treatment plan proved effective. In December 2001, Dr. Stewart Goldman told Tom that he would only have two more chemo sessions. It was a moment of mixed emotions. While the tumor had been reduced in size, it was still in Tom's head. And like many patients, Tom had felt protected and secure as long as the tumor was being treated. That security was about to end.
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