Fred M., Portland, OR
Several years ago I was diagnosed with a Meningioma on the right side of my brain after having a headache for 4 weeks. At that point I was sent to a local brain surgeon who told me that I needed to either have the tumor removed or watch it for five years. I chose the five-year plan to watch it through MRIs because I was scared to go through the surgery he had explained to me, which involved cutting me from ear to ear, pulling my face forward and taking a good portion of my skull off to get to the tumor.
Well, with the “wait and see” approach, the tumor grew ten percent in three years. So of course I knew I couldn’t wait any longer to get the tumor out because then there could be seizures and other unwanted side effects.
I was devastated. The thought of having to go through such an invasive surgery just made me ill. My primary-care doctor advised me to get a second opinion, but I did not know where to turn since I had already visited one of the best brain surgeons in Portland.
With all this in mind, I decided to search the Internet to see if I could get more information on the type of brain surgery I was about to undergo. During this search I came across the Skull Base Institute’s website and how they perform minimally invasive brain surgery. Lo and behold, my prayers had been answered. There actually is a God!
I called the Skull Base Institute and spoke to one of Dr. Shahinian’s staff members. I got a call back the very next day from Dr. Shahinian himself who informed me that he could indeed remove my tumor through a small dime-size hole above my right eyebrow.
Wow!! I mailed my films, and Dr. Shahinian confirmed that he could help me. He said he had removed tumors through the nose over 2,300 times. I felt like a huge weight had been taken off my shoulders. The Portland surgeon had only done 20 brain surgeries like the one I would need. Who would you feel is more qualified?
Skull Base Institute provided phone numbers of former patients to talk to. This helped ease my mind even more. That was it; my mind was made up. I was going to LA!
Even though I was still scared when I got there, my consultation with Dr. Shahinian made me feel very confident and relaxed. His entire staff is amazing. I was feeling good about the whole thing, and so were my mother and my wife. Dr. Shahinian is a very caring doctor who just by his presence alone makes you feel blessed to have him there to help you.
I went through surgery, and just as Dr. Shahinian said, I was out of the hospital two days later and flew home to Portland two days after that. Amazing! Not only did I have a smooth operation, my recovery time was cut in half. I had no complications and healed up quite nicely. These days no one even knows I had brain surgery unless I tell them.
Dr. Shahinian is a benefit to everyone who needs his services. Not only is he an outstanding surgeon, he has awesome people skills, which is very important when dealing with people in their time of need.
Although I owe the Skull Base Institute a considerable amount of money because my insurance would not pay a reasonable amount, I will do everything to make sure they get paid. However, I will never be able to repay Dr. Shahinian for what he has done for my family and me.
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