ABC "Good Morning America" host Michael Strahan's daughter Isabella Strahan revealed on her father's showThursday morning that she was diagnosed with a rare tumor in her brain.
Strahan, 19, said she was diagnosed with medulloblastoma in late October, about a month after she started experiencing headaches. She had just started her freshman year at USC, she said.
"I didn't notice anything was off till probably like Oct. 1," she said in an interview with her father's co-host Robin Roberts. "That's when I definitely noticed headaches, nausea, couldn't walk straight."
She said she underwent surgery on Oct. 27 to have the tumor removed. She then had to relearn how to walk and underwent a month of rehabilitation and multiple rounds of radiation, "Good Morning America" reported.
"She was heavily medicated, as you could imagine," Michael Strahan said on "GMA." "But she would have conversations. She had a lot of her friends and they would come over just to sit with her. And there were times when she was in a lot of pain. She was sleeping a lot."
Her father said he encouraged her to seek treatment soon after the symptoms began.
"That was when we decided, 'You need to really go get a thorough checkup,'" he said. "And thank goodness for the doctor. I feel like this doctor saved her life because she was thorough enough to say, 'Let's do the full checkup.'"
Cedars Sinai,the hospital that performed the surgery on Strahan, said headaches, balance problems, changes in thinking ability and dizziness are all common symptoms of medulloblastoma.
The hospital says that surgery to remove the tumor, followed by radiation and chemotherapy, are common treatments for medulloblastoma.
The hospital says that MRI scans are performed several times a year to scan for the tumor's return.
The Cure Starts Now Cancer Resource Network says that there are about 350 cases of medulloblastoma diagnosed yearly in the U.S. About 60% of those with the cancer are under age 15.
Medulloblastoma has a five-year survival rate of 72.1%, the group says.
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