DARIEN, Ill. — In September of 2016, Joey Ventimiglia, who was 6 at the time, was diagnosed with DIPG.
DIPG, Diffuse Intrinsic Pontine Glioma, is a brain tumor that rests in the pons of the brain. This area controls essential bodily functions such as the heartbeat, breathing, eyesight, and balance.
“What’s difficult about this tumor is where it sits in the brain stem,” Joe Ventimiglia, Joey’s dad, said. “It’s such a sensitive area that you cannot go out there and do surgery on it.”
There is no cure for DIPG, and it is aggressive. The median survival time is just nine months from the time of diagnosis.
When Joey was diagnosed, there were five other kids with DIPG in Illinois.
According to Joey’s GoFundMe page, all of the other children have passed since his diagnosis.
After his first MRI, the tumor was stable and shrinking. All looked well, until three weeks ago.
Joey, now 7-years-old, showed signs of …