Maddox Atkinson, Rhabdomyosarcoma

2 Months Old at Diagnosis

Maddox AtkinsonAt 2 months old, my youngest child and only daughter was diagnosed with rhabdomyosarcoma. She underwent 48 weeks of chemotherapy through a clinical trial. The combination of chemotherapy that was used with her was very effective at killing her tumor. In addition, the decision to deviate from the original protocol due to her age, proved to be the best decision.

Her group of doctors always consulted the protocol and doctors who followed the protocol when it came to what was best for our daughter. We waited to remove her tumor, we waited to give her radiation, we waited and were patient, even as her tumor prolapsed and was hanging outside of her body. The waiting and the patience and the trust paid off. Years ago, a child with a tumor such as Maddox’s (one which we presumed originated in her bladder), would have meant complete removal of her bladder, urethra, uterus, etc. She would have been hollowed out, and this was actually recommended to us by an urologist who did not follow her specific protocol. Because of CureSearch, and three of the best oncologists ever, we proved that trusting in the treatment is the best option.

Her tumor was removed in Nov. of 2010, almost 11 months after we first saw it. Because we waited, we discovered her tumor originated in her urethra, we also discovered that her bladder was clear, her uterus clear and her vaginal walls were clear. All Maddox lost was her urethra, and a small portion of her bladder. We achieved what the protocol set out to achieve, we saved her bladder and cured her at the same time.

Maddox AtkinsonHer protocol also called for radiation therapy within a few weeks of treatment, when Maddox was 3 months old. Our team of doctors decided that she was too young for radiation and put it off until she was older. Because of this decision we were able to forego radiation completely. The doctors who did her surgery were successful and they felt that putting her through radiation would be more harmful than helpful.

More than 2 years later, Maddox remains cancer free and full of life. Maddox loves anything that is pink and princess related. She loves running around outside, swimming and playing with her older brothers. She is happy, healthy and beautiful.

-Sarah Atkinson

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