According to a story from the Newham Recorder, a three year old girl named Isla Caton’s neuroblastoma has relapsed for the second time. Despite the bad news, her mother Nicola says that there is still hope that Isla can be cured. The young girl was first diagnosed with the cancer in March 2017. She endured eighteen months of treatment with chemo and radiation therapy. After her latest treatment, parents Michael Hook and Nicola were hoping to fly their daughter to the US to receive a vaccine that should eradicate the neuroblastoma for good.
Neuroblastoma is a type of cancer that originates in nerve tissue. It most commonly appears on the adrenal glands, but it can also occur in the neck, abdomen, chest, and spine. It affects children most frequently, and is often diagnosed in those under five years old. The cause of neuroblastoma is poorly known. It generally appears randomly, but in a small percentage of cases it can occur because of a mutation inherited from the patient’s parents. A few possible risk factors have been suggested, such as smoking, use of certain drugs during pregnancy, and certain occupations, but results are inconclusive. Survivability depends on the severity of the disease, with the youngest patients having better chances. To learn more about neuroblastoma, click here.
A New Treatment Approach
The latest scans found multiple areas on Isla’s bones where the cancer still persisted. The family has raised an impressive £350,000 to fund her medical costs, but with the latest news of relapse, they will need to continue their efforts. The best hope for Isla now is a combined chemo and immunotherapy treatment regimen, which costs £750,000 and is only available outside of the UK.
Without this treatment, the girl’s lifespan could be only a matter of months. Despite the grim situation, her mother still believes that her daughter can survive.
“All Isla knows is how to fight.” – Nicola, Isla’s mother
In truth, she has made great progress; when she was diagnosed, neuroblastoma had spread to 98 percent of her bones, and now the vast majority of it is gone.
If you would like to support Isla’s treatment, click here.