Chicago, IL (PRWEB) July 25, 2014
There are 700,000 people in the U.S. living with a brain tumor, and 500 diagnosed each day. Though when someone hears the words, “you have a brain tumor,” they often feel alone, confused and are unsure of the next step and where to turn.
The American Brain Tumor Association (ABTA) is helping people figure out that next step by providing and pursuing the answers patients so desperately seek. No one knows this more than Brian Olson, member of the ABTA’s Board of Directors and 28- year brain tumor survivor.
At just 12-years-old, Olson was diagnosed with a pilocytic astrocytoma, which was initially discovered during an eye exam. A neurologist confirmed the tumor, which was surrounded by a cyst the size of his fist.
“Back then, there were no resources to get information about the diagnosis,” said Olson. “There was no information on what hospitals have experience with this type of surgery, or other courses of treatment. A decision had to be made quickly, and there was no one to turn to for guidance.”
The ABTA was the first and is now the only national organization committed to funding brain tumor research and providing support and education programs for all tumor types and all age groups.
“My family and I were in the dark when I received my diagnosis, we were not aware of the ABTA,” Olson continued. “Being part of the board gives me a great opportunity to pay it forward. It is wonderful to be able to introduce people to the ABTA and the important resources they provide to the research community, individuals and their families.”
One such resource is the ABTA’s annual patient and family conference, on July 25-26 in Chicago. The two- day conference brings together patients and families to discuss the latest advances in brain tumor research, treatments and care with leaders in the field.
“Here in one room, over one weekend, patients can obtain information on advances in research, new treatments and have the opportunity to connect with those, who, like themselves, are living and dealing with a diagnosis or going through treatment,” Olson stated. “This is wonderful forum for people to network and share stories with others who may be facing the same difficult choices in their treatment options. It is my hope that with continued awareness, no individual or family ever has to go through a diagnosis alone again.”
About the ABTA Patient and Family Conference
The American Brain Tumor Association’s conference annually brings together brain tumor experts, researchers, patients, families and caregivers with the goal of improving the lives of people living with a brain tumor. This year’s theme, “Providing and Pursuing Answers: Advances in Research, Treatment and Care” describes the ABTA’s mission to be a leader in providing and pursuing the answers that brain tumor patients and their families seek. Throughout the conference, renowned brain tumor experts will cover a wide variety of topics covering new research and treatment options and important quality of life issues.
The ABTA’s 2014 patient and family conference will take place July 25-26 at the Renaissance Chicago O’Hare Suites Hotel, just minutes away from Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport. To learn more or register, visit http://www.braintumorconference.org.
ABOUT THE AMERICAN BRAIN TUMOR ASSOCIATION
Founded in 1973, the American Brain Tumor Association was first and is now the only national organization committed to funding brain tumor research and providing support and education programs for all tumor types and all age groups. For more information, visit http://www.abta.org or call 800-886-ABTA (2282).