According to the Mayo Clinic, neuroblastoma is a type of cancer most commonly found in children under the age of five. It’s caused by “immature nerve cells” and can develop in different areas of the body, but it is most often found near the adrenal glands.
Treatment for this cancer can include chemotherapy, radiation, a bone marrow transplant, immunotherapy, and surgery. A patient’s treatment largely depends on the stage of their neuroblastoma.
The five-year survival rate, which mostly depends on the child’s risk factor, varies, but it’s usually higher than 50 percent — almost a coin flip.
Some may think those are relatively good odds for cancer but don’t let that number fool you.
Neuroblastoma can be an extremely difficult cancer to treat, especially when a child is diagnosed with stage 4.
Molly Hughes, now a 21-month old toddler, was diagnosed with stage 4 neuroblastoma in 2017. Her mother, Chelsa Hughes, told CNN that the disease had spread throughout much of Molly’s tiny little body.
To fight the disease, Molly had to undergo a full treatment plan. For 15 months, the child spent a total of 130 days in the hospital where she received stem cell transplants, chemotherapy, radiation, immunotherapy, and surgery.
“WE’RE JUST THANKFUL THAT SHE MADE IT THROUGH ALL THAT TREATMENT,” CHELSEA SAID. “IT WAS TOUGH. SHE GOT REALLY, REALLY SICK. THE TREATMENTS ARE JUST SO HARSH ON [CHILDREN’S] BODIES.”
Chelsa also told CNN that one of her daughter’s treatments actually caused some hearing loss and now the 21-month old needs to wear hearing aids.
But after five torturous rounds of chemotherapy, Chelsa received the miracle phone call she’d been waiting for.
“I KINDA JUST FELL TO THE GROUND AFTER I GOT OFF THE PHONE AND I JUST HUGGED FOR HER LIKE FIVE MINUTES,” SHE TOLD WKBO.
Celebrating our little wonder woman’s last day of treatment!! Molly finishes her oral medicine tonight & that is the end…
The little warrior who endured more than most people will their entire life received the news that she was in remission. Molly’s family was thrilled.
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