Honored Kid

Jacob T.

Age 24
Jacob T. Kid Photo

Location

Fresno, CA, US

Diagnosis

Non-Hodgkin lymphoma

Date of Diagnosis

July 2008

Status

In remission

Treated At

Valley Children's Healthcare

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My Story

Jacob was diagnosed with Burkitt's Lymphoma in the summer of 2008. He had a tumor in his nasopharynx (where the nasal cavity meets the throat). Although this is a very aggressive cancer it is highly treatable and the prognosis is very good. He is being treated at Children's Hospital Central California which is the same hospital where his mom works. It all started with what we thought was a sinus infection or really bad allergies. Jacob's left nostril closed up first, and by the end of May 2008 both nostrils had closed and he could only breath through his mouth. Our pediatrician referred us to an ENT doctor who diagnosed it as a lymphoma (cancer tumor) located in his nasopharynx. It was pretty devastating news to hear that our child has cancer. We were really terrified for a while. But several years ago Jacob's mom worked as a relief oncology pharmacist at her hospital and got to know a lot of people in the oncology unit. When we got the diagnosis of cancer, she talked to a highly respected oncologist (Dr. Crouse) and had everything lined up to take care of Jacob even before the final results were back from a tissue biopsy conducted by the ENT doctor. After four very intense months of chemotherapy, Jacob is in remission. The last three PET/CT scans show no detectable signs of cancer. An exam by his ENT doctor showed a nasal cavity that he described as "pristine" with the exception of a small nasal polyp which he surgically removed. A pathology study showed that it was normal tissue, probably the leftover scar tissue from the tumor. Otherwise Jacob is recovering well and getting stronger each day. His immune system is finally up to par and he has returned to school. In March 2009 he had his mediport removed.

The Childhood Cancer Ripple Effect

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