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Karen Tenney

I feel blessed to have met Dr. Arenson as soon as I found out I had a massive Stage 3 brain tumor. He and his staff treated me with extraordinary care and respect, even going out of their way to make sure I had everything I needed to go through the horrors of chemotherapy.

Best of all, the chemo and radiation produced a truly miraculous result, which more than likely was due to the aggressive, cutting-edge chemo treatment administered by Dr. Arenson. His nurse Mary patiently guided me through every step of the process. Thank God for her.

I won’t miss the tumor, but I will miss Dr. Arenson and his magnificent staff at Swedish.

Sincerely, Karen Tenney

Karen Tenney is a 51 year old woman diagnosed with a very large, inoperable tumor in June, 2010. Biopsy revealed the tumor to be a malignant (grade III) oligodendroglioma which genetic analysis proved to be the more favorable type in terms of response to chemotherapy. Because the tumor was so large, radiation was deferred, and chemotherapy was given which shrunk the tumor to a fraction of its original size. This allowed radiation to be given to a much smaller and safer field. She is currently off therapy for more than a year with no evidence of tumor growth. The above photograph shows Karen’s MRI scans before and after treatment.

Scott Vickroy

More than 15 years ago I was diagnosed with an astrocytoma brain tumor. After surgery the doctor told me that he could not remove the tumor, that it was still in there. Even worse, he gave me a prognosis of two to five years. Not satisfied with that answer, or that hospital, I went in search of a second opinion. Meanwhile, my tumor was growing, and I needed a new set of treatment options.The CNI team turned a death sentence into a fighting chance to beat those odds. Dr. Arenson presented a plan with the intent of being curative, not simply ‘biding time’. Using conventional approaches give you conventional results. I wanted better than that. Dr. Arenson wanted better than that. He showed me a list of the people he was treating. Those guys were still here. I wanted to be on that list!

You don’t get to be on that list by making easy choices, by playing it safe. We went as aggressive as required. Dr. Arenson gave me the information I needed to make informed decisions. He also gave me a little more courage and instilled a little more confidence in me so I could make those tough choices. I was able to trust him. I had my second surgery at CNI with photodynamic therapy, then four rounds of aggressive chemotherapy, including high-dose chemo and a stem-cell rescue in July 1999.

This approach has paid off. Today, my MRI’s are all clear. And I’m writing this letter!

Sincerely, Scott Vickroy

Mary Kay French

In October 2010 my primary care physician sent me to have an MRI of my head after experiencing symptoms of confusion, inbalance, inability to write words in the correct order, and writing upward instead normally to the right. The MRI results showed a grade 4 glioblastoma multiforma brain tumor. I was then scheduled to have brain surgery, chemotherapy and radiation treatment. Due to the excellent brain surgery done by Dr. G Alexander West which removed 99% of the tumor and the subsequent post surgical aggressive treatment by Dr. Arenson, oncologist, Dr. Nancy Cersonsky, radiation oncologist, Mary Pierick, oncology nurse and all their excellent healthcare team I am here today and disease free.

My belief is that the the key to this success is due to their excellent skills, knowledge, care, compassion, and kindness. I have been employed in healthcare for over 20 years and never have seen or experienced such compassionate, honest, superior treatment in a medical practice.

I continue to have brain MRI exams every eight weeks to ensure no new growth. As of last month I am not receiving any chemotherapy and hope to be able to continue on disease free. My husband and caregiver, Steve, is key to my survival as well due to his superior care, patience, love and companionship for the past thirty five years. Let me send a message of love, thanks, and hope to all my family, friends, caregivers, fellow patients, survivors, and co-survivors. Be positive, strong, keep fighting, supportive, and enlighten each other along the way.

We do have a future and can create a new meaningful life as long as we stay positive!
Mary Kay French