It’s not just about allowing our children to be children, but also to become adults. Every child deserves that.Jane, Thomas's mum
In Perth doctors at Princess Margaret Hospital performed multiple scans and tests. Eventually a biopsy confirmed the tumour was rhabdomyosarcoma.
Jane & Sam were living in Shanghai with their 2 boys when they noticed Thomas, the youngest, had noticeable weakness in the right hand side of his face. An MRI scan was done however came back all clear. After being referred to a lot of specialists, with no results, the family decided to move back to Perth and seek medical help in Australia.
In Perth doctors at Princess Margaret Hospital performed more scans and tests, and eventually, 12 months after the initial MRI, a biopsy confirmed the tumour was rhabdomyosarcoma.
It was a year of travel, many different doctors and feeling anxious so when Thomas was finally diagnosed, as awful as the news was, we were relieved to be able to work on making him better.
All the staging tests were performed the next week, and treatment began straight away. Thomas needed a second surgery to get clear margins and try to eliminate the need for radiation. He also had a surgery to have a port inserted, where he would receive chemotherapy and other medications.
Thomas coped very well. The oncologists are able to provide a lot of supportive medicines to help relive unpleasant symptoms of treatment.
During treatment, everything revolved around cancer. Jane had to stop work to look after Thomas, and Sam had to spend a lot of time looking after Oliver. This had a huge financial and emotional impact. Thomas had to miss out on a lot during treatment as oncology children cannot be around other kids. No parks, no playgrounds, no cinemas, no shopping centres, no swimming pools. And it wasn’t just Thomas who missed out, Oliver, Thomas's older brother, was restricted from all of these places too.
The good news
Fortunately, after 8 rounds of chemotherapy, over 6 months, Thomas was declared cancer-free. And on 1 February 2017 , 6 months post treatment, the Hunt family received the good news that Thomas was still cancer-free.
Despite the good news, the Hunt family still lives in fear of little Thomas relapsing.
We worry about relapse, long term side effects of treatment and psychology side effects. As Thomas was so young, we hope that he won’t remember much about what he has been through.