Feb. 3, 2011 was the day our world stopped . Our 3 year old son Wyatt was diagnosed with Stage IV high risk neuroblastoma, a cancer that starts in the sympathetic nervous system. For 3 weeks we had taken him numerous times to his pediatrician, urgent care, and the ER. We were told it was a virus, but something in me didn’t believe that. His main symptoms were a fever and stiffness.
His main tumor was located in his left adrenal gland and was pushing down his kidney. By the time they found the cancer, it had spread to his lymphatic system, bone marrow, and he had spots on his skull, ribs, and leg. We always knew Wyatt would do big things in his life…but we never imagined that he would be fighting cancer a week after his 3rd birthday.
During 14 months of treatment Wyatt had 6 cycles of chemotherapy, surgery to remove the tumor, lymph nodes, and his adrenal gland, 12 sessions of radiation, an autologous stem cell transplant, and finally 6 months of antibody therapy.
Wyatt is officially off treatment for high risk neuroblastoma. This type of cancer has a high relapse rate, so he undergoes bone marrow biopsies and aspirates, and scans every 3 months to make sure that there is no evidence of cancer. His highly toxic treatments have left him with hearing loss in both ears mainly in high pitched sounds. His left ear is in the profound range for high pitched hearing loss. The side effects of these treatments are something we will always have to watch for…many issues show up later in life. We have learned to take each day at a time and enjoy every second with Wyatt and his siblings.