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Maria Quiban Brain Tumor Awareness PNI Saint John's
May 10, 2022

Celebrity Guests Raise Brain Tumor Awareness at Pacific Neuroscience Institute

by Amelia Garrison

Good Day LA meteorologist Maria Quiban and brain tumor survivor Tatiana Sarkisian kicked off Brain Tumor Awareness Month at PNI’s Social Hour on May 3rd, 2022.

Pacific Neuroscience Institute (PNI) kicked off Brain Tumor Awareness Month with a special social hour for brain tumor patients and their loved ones on Tuesday, May 3rd, at Providence Saint John’s Health Center in Santa Monica. The event was the first of many Go Gray in May events planned throughout the month to elevate the voices of brain tumor patients, caregivers, and their families.

Brain tumor survivor and patient
Tatiana Sarkisian, brian tumor patient and survivor.

Leading the 2022 Go Gray in May initiative was expert neuro-oncologist Akanksha Sharma, MD, an experienced physician in the treatment of primary/metastatic brain tumors, neurological complications of cancer, and disease-related burdens and symptoms. At PNI, Dr. Sharma aims to align treatment with patient goals and to provide holistic care that includes careful symptom assessment and management, as well as support for the patient’s loved ones.

Maria Quiban signs book copies.

The event was joined by celebrity guest Maria Quiban, Good Day LA meteorologist who lost her husband to glioblastoma, the most aggressive form of brain cancer. Copies of her book You Can’t Do It Alone, were available for purchase and personalized signing at the event. The book documents Maria’s journey through the loss of her husband to brain cancer, and provides guidance for facing traumatic loss and grief.

Also in attendance was 32-year-old Tatiana Sarkisian, a brain tumor survivor who was diagnosed with astrocytoma brain tumor at the age of 23. Tatiana is using her voice to advocate for change in brain tumor care and support for brain tumor patients. Learn more about Tatiana’s mission.

The Cancer Support Community Los Angeles booth.

Some of the organizations that guests met included the American Brain Tumor Association, the nation’s oldest non-profit dedicated to brain tumor education, support, and research; Cancer Support Community Los Angeles, an organization providing health education, self-help groups, and volunteer opportunities for people with cancer and their families; Walk with Sally, a Los Angeles-based non-profit providing free mentorship and support programs to children and families impacted by cancer; and Guardant360 CDx, a medical laboratory that helps doctors create personalized cancer treatment plans.

Lily, a patient service dog.

Guests also had the opportunity to learn about supportive care services at Providence Saint John’s Health Center. They met Lily, the hospital’s patient service dog, discovered the hospital’s spiritual care and nutrition services, and learned about current and upcoming clinical trials at services at Saint John’s Cancer Institute. The institute is a renowned research facility in Santa Monica dedicated to advanced therapeutics, translational sciences, and best medical practices.

Discover PNI’s upcoming Go Gray in May events here.

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About the Author

Amelia Garrison MPhil

Amelia Garrison

Amelia Garrison is the Marketing Specialist at Pacific Neuroscience Institute (PNI). Well versed in community outreach strategy and implementation, she leads the PNI blog, newsletter, and digital communications. Amelia oversees PNI's reputation management and community sponsorships.

Last updated: November 11th, 2022