Kyler Jones was a happy, energetic, 4-year-old when he starting experiencing headaches and vomiting in February of 2017. When the flu-like symptoms didn’t subside, his parents, Meagan and Michael, became more concerned. A CT scan revealed that he had a mass on the back of his skull. Kyler was immediately sent to Brenner Children’s for an MRI, where he was diagnosed with medulloblastoma, a cancerous brain tumor.
Medulloblastoma is the most common pediatric central nervous system malignancy, and accounts for about 20% of all pediatric central nervous system tumors. About 500 children are diagnosed with medulloblastoma in the US each year.
Daniel E. Couture, MD, a pediatric neurosurgeon, was able to perform a complete resection, and successfully remove the entire tumor. Kyler’s pediatric hematologist oncologist, David Kram, MD, sent Kyler’s tumor for testing to obtain an exact diagnosis. This type of precision oncology enabled Kyler's care team to give him the best care available, and get a head start on how he would treat Kyler if the tumor were to reoccur.
Although surgery was successful and the tumor was removed, Kyler still had to undergo six weeks of radiation therapy, followed by eleven months of chemotherapy infusions to kill any remaining cancer cells and keep them from growing back.
Fourteen months, one brain surgery, six MRI’s, 31 rounds of radiation, 62 rounds of chemo, 14 blood transfusions, and 26 days in the hospital later—Kyler received his last treatment and rang the bell, signifying he was completely cancer free on May 1st, 2018.
Today, his energy is coming back and he is looking forward to spending time as a normal 6-year-old boy. And, while we at Brenner Children’s are going to miss his smiling face and terrific attitude, that return to normal life is exactly what we were fighting for all along.