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In the News: Senator John McCain Battles Brain Tumor

OhioHealth's Dr. Janet Bay Talks To Local Media

Senator John McCain is recovering after surgery for a brain tumor. When the news broke, many Ohioans wanted to know more about the type of tumor and the prognosis. They wanted to separate fact from fiction on the symptoms, outlook, and more.

Dr. Janet Bay is system vice president for OhioHealth Neuroscience and talked to 10TV, ABC6, and the Columbus Dispatch the day following the Senator's surgery.

She says glioblastoma is the most common adult malignant brain tumor, which starts with surgery, followed by treatment including chemotherapy and/or radiation.

“It’s a difficult tumor to treat because the brain itself is sensitive and can be injured by all the things that injure the tumor,” Dr. Bay told Jennifer Smola of the Columbus Dispatch. “It’s a toughie," she added.

Dr. Bay says the average survival rate for this type of cancer is 14 months. She says there are many clinical trials in this area happening right now in central Ohio, but unfortunately, nothing has shown to be a significant enough of a breakthrough to change the life expectancy range in recent years.

"We start out preparing people for the worst and hoping and praying for something better," Dr. Bay told ABC6. "We encourage all the patients to get into clinical trials, since there is no answer for this tumor presently because we want to give them the very best chance and we also want to learn by treating them with new and innovative treatments," she said.

The number of people with this form of cancer is 3 in 100,000 according to Dr. Bay. There are a small number of patients who exceed 5 years of life, but that is a number that is very small. Dr. Bay says there is hope that there will additional funding opportunities for research and that Senator McCain makes a full recovery.

To read the article in The Columbus Dispatch, click the logo.


To see the coverage from ABC6, click the logo.