In late 2020, Reynaldo Jaimes began having consistent, painful headaches. At the time, he had no idea that they were actually symptoms of a rare tumor that would later drastically affect his health.
The headaches continued for several months until they worsened in spring 2021. One day, Jaimes began vomiting and his right hand went numb, which pushed him to go to the emergency room in Douglas, Georgia near his home. Jaimes immediately called his wife, Kayla, who agreed to meet him there.
When Jaimes arrived at the ER, he quickly learned that his migraine was more than expected. He received IV fluids and a CT scan, which revealed he had a rare brain tumor. The mass was large enough to cover both sides of his brain’s frontal lobe.
“I looked at my wife in fear, thinking I was going to lose it,” Jaimes said.
Because of this serious condition, Jaimes was prepped immediately for a helicopter flight to UF Health Jacksonville.
When Jaimes arrived at UF Health Jacksonville, UF Health neurosurgeon Daryoush Tavanaiepour, MD, was one of the first people to see him and quickly assessed the tumor. Tavanaiepour discovered there were intimate blood vessels connected to the tumor that controlled many other vital bodily functions.
Tavanaiepour recommended Jaimes have surgery to remove the tumor as soon as possible. He educated both Jaimes and his wife about possible complications with the surgery, including a high risk of blood loss and potential for a stroke.
However, Tavanaiepour also shared that he would work to reduce the complications using a multidisciplinary approach with his team. The UF Health Jacksonville Skull Base Center includes a highly skilled, nationally recognized and interdisciplinary team of neurosurgeons, neuroradiologists, and oral and maxillofacial surgeons. Backed by the late UF Health Jacksonville CEO, Leon L. Haley Jr., MD, as well as current senior leadership, the Skull Base Center was created to offer comprehensive care to patients across specialties.
Because of the high risk and complexities of Jaimes’ surgery, having a team to provide expertise and insight was essential. Jaimes had only one request before surgery — to spend a few days with his family.
“I wanted to go home to be with my wife and kids, because this might be the last time I saw them,” Jaimes said.