Michael Strahan’s Daughter Battles Medulloblastoma at Duke

Michael Strahan's Daughter Battles Medulloblastoma at Duke

Durham, N.C., January 12, 2024 – Isabella Strahan, the 19-year-old daughter of NFL Hall of Famer Michael Strahan and co-anchor of “Good Morning America,” has publicly revealed her ongoing battle with a malignant brain tumor, medulloblastoma. In an emotional sit-down interview with “Good Morning America,” Isabella, a University of Southern California freshman, shared her journey since experiencing symptoms in the fall.

Isabella initially attributed her headaches and nausea to vertigo but later faced severe symptoms, including throwing up blood. Following an MRI, a 4-centimeter tumor in the back of her brain was discovered, leading to an emergency surgery. She is currently undergoing treatment at Duke’s Preston Robert Tisch Brain Tumor Center.

“I just finished radiation therapy, which is proton radiation. And I got to ring the bell yesterday. It was great. It was very exciting because it’s been a long 30 sessions, six weeks,” said Isabella during the interview.

Isabella is set to begin chemotherapy at Duke Children’s Hospital & Health Center next month. The Strahan family, no stranger to the impact of brain tumors, is teaming up with the hospital to create a YouTube series documenting Isabella’s journey.

“I don’t want to hide it anymore because it’s hard always to keep it in. I hope to just kind of be a voice and be a person people, who maybe are going through physical therapy or radiation, can look at and find something interesting about their day,” said Isabella.

Medulloblastoma, which affects about 500 children annually, accounts for nearly 20% of all childhood brain tumors. Isabella’s case is particularly rare as the majority of patients are usually younger than 10 years old.

“I literally think that in a lot of ways, I’m the luckiest man in the world because I got an amazing daughter, and I know she’s going through it, but I know we’re never given more than we can handle, and she’s going to crush this,” said Michael Strahan.

Isabella’s story has resonated with families like the George family, whose 2-year-old son Connor battled a similar diagnosis in 2020. Connor’s mother, Brooke George, is now involved in advocacy efforts, serving as the Family Support Coordinator for The Cure Starts Now, a charitable organization focused on cancer research.

The National Cancer Institute reports a relative 5-year survival rate of 72% for medulloblastoma. Advocates like Brooke George aim not only to improve this statistic but also to enhance available treatments, addressing potential lifelong side effects on children.

Isabella’s bravery in sharing her journey aims to raise awareness and support for those facing similar battles. The Strahan family remains optimistic as they navigate this challenging chapter, emphasizing the strength and resilience of their daughter.