LOS ANGELES, California (AP) -- A 9-year-old boy successfully underwent surgery Wednesday to remove most of a brain tumor he nicknamed "Frank," and which was the subject of an online auction to help raise money for medical bills.
"It really went very well. I'm thrilled," said Dr. Hrayr Shahinian, who performed the surgery at the Cedars-Sinai Medical Center's Skull Base Institute in Los Angeles.
Cells from the tumor, which had been treated with chemotherapy and radiation, will now be studied to determine if it is malignant.
***** Dingman-Grover, of Sterling, Virginia., went into surgery around 10 a.m. at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, said Frank Groff, spokesman for the Institute. A little more than two hours later, he was awake and talking, Shahinian said.
Shahinian said *****'s oncologists must now decide whether to give him one more round of chemotherapy. "We have to sit tight and wait to see ... is Frank dead?" he said.
The doctor said he was able to remove nearly all the tumor, but that some scar tissue in the area may still contain traces of it. He said ***** would likely be discharged Thursday.
The boy was diagnosed in 2003 with embryonal rhabdomyosarcoma. A grapefruit-sized tumor was impinging on his optic nerves and carotid arteries, causing blindness and headaches.
The size and location of the tumor made it impossible for doctors to take out, according to his mother's ad on eBay.
Chemotherapy and radiation shrank it to the size of a peach pit, restoring his vision, but there were side effects. For a while he couldn't walk or eat and had to be fed through a tube, his mother said.
***** named his tumor after Frankenstein's monster, who scared him until he dressed up as the fictional character for Halloween. His parents auctioned off a bumper sticker reading "Frank Must Die" on eBay to raise money for his treatment.