Concussion leads to brain tumor discovery for local woman

Posted at 10:13 PM, Aug 17, 2018
and last updated 2018-08-19 11:56:33-04

TALLAHASSEE, FL (WTXL) -- Sometimes an accident turns out to be a blessing in disguise. And for one Tallahassee woman, getting a concussion may have been a lifesaver. 

Getting a concussion doesn't sound like good news. For Vittoria, it led doctors to discover a tumor on her brain.

"They said you have a concussion, but we're gonna do a scan just in case. And that's when they found, what they said at the time, was a tumor the size of a walnut that had been in her head for probably five to ten years," said Grace Thompson. 

Thompson is Vittoria's best friend and coworker at Izzy Pub & Sushi. She said, the tumor ended up being the size of a golf ball.

Doctors told Vittoria, if it wasn't treated, the tumor would have started causing seizures in the next few years. However, it was treated.

It all started as a mishap from Vittoria hitting her head on a ladder while taking the trash out at Izzy. Employees need to walk around the building to throw the trash out.

Vittoria told her friends the ladder was sticking off a truck that was parked. She said she hit her head hard enough it made the entire truck shake.

Vittoria had surgery at Tallahassee Memorial Healthcare a month after the tumor was found. Dr. Ingrid Jones-Ince said, every patient is different but it's possible for tumor symptoms to go unnoticed like Vittoria's did. 
"This can go unrecognized, especially if it's slowly growing and it's not causing any surrounding tumor swelling or edema. However, once it reaches a significant size where it's compressing other tissues surrounding, then definitely symptoms may present," said Dr. Jones-Ince.
She said regular check-ups are are all part of catching these things before they worsen.
"Everyone should at least get an annual wellness visit because, of course, during that time frame your physician can hone in on any abnormal symptoms or signs," said Dr. Jones-Ince.

It's a long road to recovery for Vittoria. That's why Thompson is throwing a fundraiser to raise money for Vittoria while she's out of work.

"It was quite a blessing that they found it. I get really emotional thinking about what would have happened if it didn't happen. But we're very happy it did," said Thompson.

In support of Vittoria, on Sunday, Aug. 26, everyone is invited to come to a fundraiser being thrown for her.

From 4:00 - 10:00 p.m., there will be live music, raffles, silent auctions and more at Izzy Pub and Sushi in Midtown.

For more information, click here