According to a story from the Harborough Mail, Magnus, who is six years old, was diagnosed with neuroblastoma around Christmas last year. Unfortunately, the disease had already spread and was in stage 4. He had been undergoing chemotherapy, but his parents have been hard a work trying to fundraise so that he can get a more specialized treatment.
Neuroblastoma is a type of cancer that appears in nerve tissue and typically affects young children. It often originates in the adrenal glands, but the tumor can appear in other areas also, including the neck, spine, abdomen, or chest. In most cases, the cause of neuroblastoma is unknown; a very small percentage of cases have been linked to inherited genetic mutations. There are also some genetic disorders that can increase the risk. Symptoms can vary depending on where the tumor is located and can include a swollen abdomen, breathing difficulty, anemia, bruising, joint pain, fever, loss of appetite, fatigue, and bone pain. Treatment may include chemo, surgery, radiation, and stem cell transplant. Outcomes vary depending on staging and the age of the patient, with younger patients doing better. Five year survival rate is 68 percent in patients over a year old. To learn more about neuroblastoma, click here.
In their efforts to raise money, the local community of Brixworth has been enthusiastic in their support for Magnus. Since his diagnosis, multiple fundraisers have been held, and there are many more in the works. The Might Magnus Medicine Fund has managed to raise £30,000 so far. Kate, Magnus’s mother, says that the family has been amazed by the support and kindness they have received, often from complete strangers.
A Challenging Disease to Treat
Magnus presented with severe disease, including a large abdominal tumor and metastases in his bones. Treatment has been intense and even if the boy is able to survive his neuroblastoma, it is likely that the side effects of treatment will leave him with lifelong health problems. He has responded well to treatment so far, but the family is still planning to travel to the US to receive more specialized care. If you would like to support Magnus and his family, click here.