Juvenile Myelomonocytic Leukemia (JMML) is a rare form of leukemia which affects young children, generally under the age of 5. JMML affects around 4 in every million children and the average age at diagnosis is around 2 years old.
Kayli was officially diagnosed with JMML in July of 2001. Chronic ear infections, an unexplained rash over ~40% of her body and an enlarged spleen, finally led us to seek a consultation from what would end up becoming her hematologist/oncologist. After her diagnosis Kayli underwent the treatment protocol put out by University of Alabama-Birmingham. She had the majority of her pretreatment performed at Children's Hospital Central California, including her splenectomy, 6 other surgeries and her eventual life saving bone marrow transplant performed at Lucille Packard Children's Hospital at Stanford. Kayli's bone marrow donors name is Elizabeth (Liz) Giordano. Liz currently lives with her husband Toby in Denver, Colorado. Liz is an amazing person who gave Kayli the precious gift of life by giving Kayli her bone marrow. We have been so blessed to have her in our lives.
Kayli's experience was certainly not free from setbacks, but we continued to be propped up from the great support provided by our family, friends and some of the JMML parents that were going through or had gone through all of the same things we were. Currently Kayli is doing well. She takes penicillin twice a day and has a daily growth hormone shot. She is in 3rd grade and is full of attitude and energy. She is currently in gymnastics and swims for a swim league in our town. She has a great passion for hockey games and cheering for her favorite buddy P.O. It is hard to believe she has come so far. Kayli is now 9 years old, has been cancer free for 7 years and we are so blessed to have her!