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The course at hand

Posted by Ariel Horner on July 3rd, 2013


Hello everyone.

So yesterday Rico received an MRI at Cleveland Clinic to help determine how he should proceed with treatment. Unfortunately, things didn’t quite go as planned. The following summary is taken from a recent update to Rico’s close friends and family:

“The MRI was the last hurdle we needed to cross in order to start the Northwest Biotherapeutics DCVax vaccine which has been painstaking laboratory-created from Rico's tumor tissue removed on April 9th during his double craniotomy.  The result we were looking for was no true tumor growth for us to move forward with the clinical trial and start the series of three vaccine injections.  What we got instead was "pseudoprogression" also known as "radiation necrosis" or "treatment artifact".  In other words there were hot spots on the MRI in the region where the tumors were removed that could possibly indicate tumor progression.  The general consensus from Cleveland Clinic's neuro-oncologist is that the "hot spots" are treatment artifacts but the Northwest Biotherapeutics DCVax Clinical Trial protocol indicates that in the case of pseudoprogression or treatment artifacts, the patient must wait 8 weeks during which time he or she will undergo 2 cycles of increased dose Temodar.  After the 2 months there is another MRI, and if the "hot spots" stay the same or diminish, the conclusion is pseudoprogression and the vaccine is administered. [We] have gone back and forth with Northwest Biotherapeutics on this point pushing for an interim MRI but this is the approved protocol with no deviations.”

So, for now, Rico will be sitting tight for eight weeks until he goes back to Cleveland. He will be sticking to a strict diet which, combined with the Temodar, will hopefully stifle any true tumor progression. Please continue to stay tuned, send positive thoughts, and donate. I will hopefully be updating this page with future fundraising efforts as the weeks go on. Be glad to know that Rico is still in good spirits despite this set-back, and I encourage you to reach out to him if you can. Attitude has a lot to do with beating this thing. I will be visiting him a few times during this month so I will share any comments he wants to give. And please, if you know any survivors of this disease or are a survivor yourself, please email us or leave a “hug” on this page with your tips.

Let’s keep going and help Rico beat this thing! He still has a hell of a fighting chance!

Thank you for your continued support,



Check out this awesome group that our friend Sharyl started for Rico. Please donate and encourage her to climb to the top! Click the link below.

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$46,494 of $150,000
264 donations

This fundraiser ended on 08/26/13

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This fundraiser is for: Enrico Walder
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