Kelly Stafford, wife of Detroit Lions QB, to undergo surgery to remove brain tumor

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IMAGE VIA @KBSTAFFORD89
  • Image via @kbstafford89
The wife of Detroit Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford took to Instagram Wednesday morning with an emotional post to announce her plans to undergo surgery to remove a recently diagnosed brain tumor.

Kelly Stafford posted a photo of her with her husband on the day she received the diagnosis along with a photo of the X-ray that shows a tumor on some of her cranial nerves.

She wrote that after a few spells of vertigo in January, the Lions team doctor recommended she get an MRI on her brain, which revealed the benign tumor.

“The medical term they used was an acoustic neuroma or vestibular schwannoma,” she wrote. “All I heard was brain tumor & that they had to do surgery to take it out.”



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This is a picture of Matthew & I the day we found out. I said I wanted this picture of us, so that the day this was all over, we could look back at this photo & remember. Within the last year, I began to notice things that I thought was just me getting older.. I would show my girls how to do a front roll or twirl in ballet class and immediately feel dizzy & off balance... Things that I had been doing my entire life were now, all of a sudden, difficult. The beginning of Jan was when I experienced my first spell of vertigo..It kept happening & then it happened while I was holding Hunter. Matthew took me straight to the ER. They checked vitals & bloodwork, all were fine.. Several vertigo spells later, Matthew’s team doctor recommended we go get an MRI of my brain to rule everything major out. A few days later we were hit with the results. I had a tumor sitting on some of my cranial nerves. The medical term they used was an acoustic neuroma or vestibular schwannoma All I heard was brain tumor & that they had to do surgery to take it out.. so that is what we are going to do & we believe we found the best doctor to do it. I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t completely terrified of brain surgery. I am. I am terrified of them opening my head, I’m terrified of losing my hearing, I’m terrified of losing facial function, I’m terrified of far worse things that could happen and I’m terrified that I won’t take the time I need to recover because the guilt I might feel of being absent from my kids for too long.. I am telling y’all this to ask for prayers and support. Things to pray for: -calmness in these next 2 weeks as I know anxiety will run high in myself & my whole family leading up to the day of surgery. -that God be in the room with the surgeons & give them all the guidance, steadiness, & confidence they need. -my safety during and after surgery. -please pray for matthew as I know his nerves will be high during this surgery. I couldn’t imagine being out in that waiting room. Thank u. Thank u for reading this novel. thank u for all your support and most importantly, thank u for your prayers.

A post shared by Kelly Stafford (@kbstafford89) on


Stafford said she plans to undergo surgery and has already found a doctor. She wrote in the post about her fears of the potential consequences of the surgery and of being absent from her family’s life.

According to the Mayo Clinic's website, surgery for an acoustic neuroma is performed under general anesthesia. In some cases, when the tumor is too close to important parts of the brain or facial nerve, the whole tumor may not be removed. Potential complications are various, and may include facial numbness, balance problems, hearing loss, and stroke.

“I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t completely terrified of brain surgery. I am,” Stafford wrote. “I am terrified of them opening my head, I’m terrified of losing my hearing, I’m terrified of losing facial function, I’m terrified of far worse things that could happen and I’m terrified that I won’t take the time I need to recover because the guilt I might feel of being absent from my kids for too long.”

Stafford is asking for support and prayers over the next two weeks.



Matt and Kelly Stafford began dating as undergraduate students at the University of Georgia, where Matt was a quarterback and Kelly was a cheerleader. The classic couple married almost ten years later in April 2015.

They have three daughters, including twin sisters Sawyer and Chandler, who were born in 2017, and Hunter, born in August 2018.
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