Dean Schuck

At first, Dean gave little thought to his hearing loss.  But when an MRI showed a tumor in Dean's brain, the situation took on a new level of urgency.

Seeking a better treatment option, Dean learned of an exciting new technology that would enable him to forgo traditional radiation altogether.  Working with Dr. Sperduto and his team, Dean learned that his condition made him a perfect candidate for Stereotactic Radiosurgery – a non-invasive, one-hour procedure that would target Dean’s tumor with pin-pointed accuracy, more quickly and with fewer side effects than traditional therapy. 


Dean Schuck wasn’t too worried about the hearing loss he had noticed in his left ear.  Afterall, he was a dairy farmer, and loud noise was a constant companion to the job.  But as his hearing deteriorated, Dean decided that a second opinion couldn’t hurt.

“A tumor?” The farmer from Willmar, Minnesota didn’t want to believe what he was hearing.  The doctor explained what the MRI had revealed: a tumor that ran along the end of his audio ear nerve was pressing against his brain stem.  The diagnosis was acoustic neuroma.  And though there was relief in the finding that the tumor was benign, Dean wasn’t excited about the prescribed treatment: six grueling weeks of radiation therapy.

This dedicated farmer never missed a day of planting or harvesting, thanks to the treatment and technologies used by Dr. Sperduto's team.

“The doctors couldn’t have been better,” says Dean of the Sperduto team.  “If I hadn’t been there on the MRI table and witnessed the treatment myself, I wouldn’t have believed they had done anything.”  The very next day, Dean returned to his usual farm work, with no noticeable side-effects following his treatment.  Says Dean of his quick rebound: “I’m a crop farmer, and thanks to this treatment, I’ve never missed a day of spring planting.”

Dean’s condition continues to improve, as his tumor has already reduced in size by 25%, and is expected to be fully-resolved in seven years.  Had the condition gone untreated, Dean could have expected further deterioration – perhaps even facial paralysis as a result of the tumor’s growth.  Dean couldn’t be happier with his prognosis: “I feel very lucky to have such a great team of doctors working on my behalf.”

Dean Schuck
Anne Johnson

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