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  • Julie Gerhart Houts

Diagnosis and Updates from Drew

These emails started with a small group and then people got added on a random basis over time:) We were missing lots of you and are sorry! With my ups and downs it was hard to keep up. We are really sorry and hope this site helps!





July 9th


Hi Family and Friends,


Julie had her biopsy today, so we wanted to send a note to you with an update. They took her back around 2pm for pre-op, from there the procedure started just after 4pm. I was just able to speak with the surgeon and he said she is doing great! They now have her in the room where we will spend the night, which is in the Neuro ICU so they can closely monitor her until they discharge her some time tomorrow afternoon. They weren't able to determine what type of tumors she has just yet, but hopefully we will find out tomorrow or Monday so we can begin to formulate a treatment plan. Thanks to each of you for your love and support, there's no doubt we will need that as we continue through this journey. As we get more details we will be sure to share.


Thank you and we love each you,

Drew and Julie


July 10th


Good morning! Quick update from KU Med.



Julie had a great night and got good sleep. She's up and moving around, she had her hair in a bun and lipstick on before 7:30 this morning! :-) Our overnight nurse was so wonderful. Ebony took good care of her and as it happens, Ebony is in the middle of a kitchen remodel, so Julie was providing design advice around midnight last night! It was a good way for her to get her mind off of things and a blessing to both of us.


The surgeon came in around 7:30 or so and we had a good chat. We are working to control the pain so we know what we need to do when we get home. Speaking of home, we plan to be discharged some time after noon today, which will be great.


Thanks again for your prayers, love and offers to help it is great to know we have so many people that love us.


More to come... in the meantime, give your family a hug and tell them you love them!


Love,

Drew and Julie



July 15th


First, Julie and I want to thank you for the wonderful support and love you have shown i


n the last week plus. Each of you have played a role in helping us get through this whether with prayers, flowers, gifts, food, lending an ear or providing advice. Thank you, it is difficult to express appropriate gratitude for your help both now and in the days to come. As promised, we wanted to provide an update as soon as we had one to share. Earlier this morning we received a call from the Neurosurgeon team, unfortunately, we were told the biopsy they took was inconclusive. So,

that means we are still not yet able to determine type or treatment. The next step is to go in for an updated MRI tomorrow morning so the doctors can compare the images from last week and then determine the next step. While we are unsure what that next step is, there is a distinct possibility it will be to get another biopsy and repeat what we did last week. We will continue to update you as we learn and know more. Thank you for your continued prayers.


Love you all,

Drew and Julie




July 21st


Hi Family and Friends,


We thank God each day for your prayers and support through this. The wonderful messages, food, flowers, gifts, prayers and love have been tremendous. So many of you have shared your experiences and offered encouragement, our friends in the medical field have been amazing in offering advice and connections so we could ensure Julie has the best care and approach possible. It really is amazing and we love each of you for it, thank you!


Julie just finished up her 2nd biopsy a little bit ago. She's resting comfortably now here in the Neuro ICU and I'm sitting right beside her as she smiles at her nurse and tells me how tough she is... which she is. For those of you who have not heard, we were able to avoid the more intrusive procedure today. They were able to identify an alternate path to one of the other tumors that only required a needle, so they were able to get the needed pathology with just a needle biopsy. We were so relieved when we found out. So, that means we should only be here one night and head home tomorrow.


The other good news is that the doctors were able to confirm we got the pathology we need for diagnosis and treatment plan. We should have more of the details of that by end of w


eek. Until then please continue to pray, we need it for sure and appreciate all the love and support.

Love,

Drew and Julie



July 22, 2020


Good evening loved ones! Sorry we're a little delayed in getting this last update out, I know I promised one this morning but we got a little caught up! So, now let's get you caught up.

We had a great night at KU last night. Julie was awake and talking as soon as I arrived in the ICU room with her. During the evening, we had a couple blessings. First, our wonderful nurse Ebony changed shifts so she could be with us through the night! It was a total surprise and a tremendous help to have someone there we knew we could trust and with whom we had already developed a wonderful bond. We chatted through the evening with Ebony and about 10pm, it was time to get some rest. Second, we were able to get some decent sleep. Julie had done so well

through the procedure, she was not in nearly as much pain as last time, so we were able to get a couple good chunks of sleep.


This morning we met with the doctor around 9am and had a good conversation about next steps. We were discharged at that point and home before noon! Julie spent most of the

afternoon resting and we just finished up some Original Pizza with the kids. So, not a terrible day all things considered.


As I said in my note below, the doctors were sure they got the needed tissue for the pathology report. We learned, and wanted to share with this group, that the type of tumors Julie has is called Glioblastoma. It is a very aggressive type and will require quick and pretty intense treatment, which we are now working to get set up. We have spent the afternoon setting appointments and researching how we should proceed. Next steps are to meet with two docs tomorrow that are part of the HCA group, thanks to a wonderful friend who worked quickly to get us there. We also have an appointment next Wednesday with the Neuro Oncologist at KU to discuss how they would have us proceed. It appears this immediate treatment plan is 4-6 weeks of daily radiation and chemotherapy. After that, we will have a more tailored plan based on the specific findings of the pathology.

That's a lot of detail, but we thought it important to share what we are able to at this point. We have shared with our kids who are processing the news and being loving and supporting as well.

Julie and I know the road ahead is a tough one, but you won't find us with our heads down. God has a plan for us, we are now on a journey to walk it out. We need your help, prayers, positive thinking and pep talks along the way. I know we can count on each of you.

We plan to grab the kids and head to the mountains this weekend. When we get back we can't wait to see each of you, in the meantime we covet your prayers.


We Love You,

Drew and Julie




Didn't Post - had in drafts - so sorry!


Hi Team Julie!

It's been a few weeks since we have shared an update so we wanted to make sure everyone has the latest. Before we do that, Julie and I want to make sure to tell you all that the support you have shown is wonderfully overwhelming. We cannot express the gratitude in our hearts for all your prayers, kind words, cards, flowers, gifts and more, but mostly your love and friendship. You can't know unless you are in this spot, but it creates an amazing foundation for Julie and I to help each other and our kids through this very difficult time. Over the last month, we have seen God's hand as we seek wisdom for our decisions and hope for our future, no sign of his love and guidance has been more apparent than what we have received from each of you. So, thank you for all you are are doing, we love it, love you and appreciate all of it with no way to repay it (which is something we are having to get more comfortable with because we aren't very good at that).


The last week or so has been very challenging and emotional for our family. It seems every conversation with the doctors and every test result we get back the challenge just gets bigger. We have struggled through what path to take and talked with doctors all over the country while praying for wisdom, guidance and even audible direction from God. In the end, we made the decision to proceed forward with six weeks of radiation and chemotherapy treatment. Those two things will be supplemented with other medication in order to fight this disease. That process starts tomorrow (Thursday) and will go through September 17th. Subsequent to this treatment plan, we will evaluate the impact it has had on the disease and determine the next steps from there. There are options for us like treatment at specialty centers like Duke, Clinical trials or possibly surgery but we will be able to make the best decision once we see what impact this treatment plan has had.


Julie has remained strong, she is tough and wants to keep life as normal as possible. She has spent some time working, cleaning and organizing. She really is an amazing person and her determination to win this fight makes me love her more, which I didn't think was possible.


Thank you again for all you are doing. Keep the love and prayers coming, we covet that and cherish your friendship and support.


Your Grateful Friends,

Drew and Julie




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The Houts Family

!!Welcome

Thank you so much for checking in!  We are so thankful for your friendship and support.  

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