Honored Kid

Danae Ontiveros

Age 23
Danae Ontiveros Kid Photo

Location

Paso Robles, CA, US

Diagnosis

Ewing sarcoma

Date of Diagnosis

November 2013

Status

In treatment

Treated At

Valley Children's Healthcare Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital

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My Story

Thank you for supporting me and the more than 300,000 kids worldwide who will be diagnosed with cancer this year. By sharing the gifts of your time, talent and money with the St. Baldrick’s Foundation, you're supporting research to give all kids with cancer a better chance for a cure. On November 19, 2013, our world was forever changed. I had taken our precious daughter to the local Urgent Care facility because she was complaining of difficulty breathing and left side pain, after her water polo practice. It was then we discovered that she had a huge mass covering her entire left chest cavity. The doctor came to our room and showed us the CT scan and said, “I’m not sure what this is but it doesn’t look good.” He further related that we would need to immediately go to a hospital that specializes in pediatrics. At 1:00 am we rushed Danae to Madera’s Valley Children’s Hospital (VCH) where we would spend the next 17 days. On our second day of being admitted, and after seeing several specialists. We were given the diagnosis: Stage III “Ewings Sarcoma,” a rare form of bone cancer predominant found in adolescents. Less than 300 people are diagnosed with this cancer a year. As we all sat in disbelief tears ran from our eyes. We were in shock and didn’t know how to react. Once we were able to gather our composer, we started phoning family and friends and sharing the horrible news. It has been a long five months and we still have a long road ahead of us. Danae has made remarkable improvements and had great success with the 6 rounds of chemotherapy that she received at VCH. On March 6, 2014, she had surgery at Stanford Medical Center and had the tumor removed along with three ribs. Her surgeon was very optimistic and said the surgery went perfect. He related, “All margins looked clean and felt confident that he got it all”. This was music to our ears. Danae is still recovering from this major surgery and continues to improve on a daily basis. She still has to endure six more months of chemotherapy, several blood and platelet transfusions, and countless future episodes of nausea and vomiting. Treatment and care will continue at Lucille Packard Stanford Medical Center until Danae finishes 11 more rounds of chemotherapy. Stanford is approximately 3½ hours away from our home which is a challenge in itself. We will continue to battle this illness with her until she is free from cancer and able to live a normal life again. Chemotherapy is so toxic that our lives often feel like one nonstop roller coaster ride and a constant balancing act. Right now this includes trying to keep Danae’s laboratory results within normal limits so that she doesn’t miss her scheduled chemotherapy treatment and keeping her away from illness so that she doesn’t become ill herself as this could be life threatening. Danae remains very positive and optimistic and has become an inspiration to all of us.

The Childhood Cancer Ripple Effect

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Children who are fighting or have fought cancer inspire others to be part of the Foundation's mission — to support the most promising research to find cures for childhood cancers and give survivors long and healthy lives.

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