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Thursday, May 1, 2014
We thank God for the good news regarding Princeton's scan results! Last week Princeton had an MIBG, a test specific
for detecting Neuroblastoma cells. The doctor was specifically looking to see if the spot found on Princeton's head
in February had progressed and if there was any new developments. Praise God, the spot on Princeton's had is dissolved.
It is no longer there. A blessing, indeed!
The scans did not indicate anything obvious or overwhelmingly
alarming. In fact, the doctor said Princeton is in remission as of today. Of course, we know that could change
at anytime. However, the radiologist who read the report, indicated the spot on Princeton's right orbit above his eye
is slightly more enhanced than shown on previous scans and there is a small enhancement under his left eye. The
spot on Princeton's right orbit has always been an area of concern. When he was first diagnosed a tumor had eaten
through his skull leaving a hole there to be mended over time. This area has always had uptake on the scans.
The question has always been, is it Neuroblastoma positive or is it just the bone mending itself. With these areas
of uncertainty, Princeton needs to be monitored closely and will repeat scans at the end of July or early August.
We believe with all our hearts the areas around his eyes are not positive for Neuroblastoma and that he is completely healed.
As parents, it is tough to be placed in a position where we are in the middle between the doctor and a specialist
who reads the reports. When they have different opinions it makes it hard to know how to stand as a parent and what
course of action to take when pertaining to our son's treatment. The only sure thing we do know is God IS in control,
He has Princeton's best interest in mind, and we can leave the worrying to Him. We believe Princeton is healed from
the crown of his head to the soles of his feet in Jesus' name, because by His stripes we ARE healed. This is a promise
and a promise we choose to stand on.
We will continue fighting this battle alongside Princeton for as long
as it takes. Honestly though, the battle has already been won. We won't just fight for Princeton, but for all
the special children facing this horrible disease called, cancer. As a family, we will live each day enjoying the
gift of life and praising God for our family and our journey. It is through this journey we have learned so much and
we will be forever grateful for the lessons learned and the things we still have to learn. Thank you for your continued
prayers and support. Your prayers are working and we thank you so much for them.
We will CHOOSE to continue to praise Him in this storm! The scan results did not come back as we expected, but
that's okay. We are going to proceed moving forward in anticipation and faith. Nothing is going to stop us from
fighting. We are going to keep standing firm on God's promise, "For the I know the plans I have for you, Princeton,
declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you, Princeton, and not to harm you, Princeton. Plans to give you hope, Princeton,
and a future." Jeremiah 29:11
Several tests are performed to determine if there is any traces of Neuroblastoma
cells present. They cannot always be detected if there is not enough cells clustered together (it takes at least 1 million) and
no test is fool proof. Therefore, what one test might detect, another may not. The bone scan, MRI and CT all came
back negative. Praise God! However, the MIBG (specific to targeting Neuroblastoma cells) came back positive. For
an MIBG scan, radioactive dye is injected into the body. The dye then is known to stick to Neuroblastoma cells. When
this happens, the images from the scan show uptake or highlighted areas on the body where the cells are detected.
A new spot was found on Princeton's head. Specifically, it is located on the right vertex on the scalp/bone.
The blessing is that it has no effect on the brain. Another praise moment! At this point, the spot cannot
be classified as a relapse until it can be proven that the spot is in fact Neuroblastoma. The only way to be sure is
through a biopsy. Unfortunately, the spot is too small to biopsy. Therefore, we need to wait for his next set
of scans scheduled for 2 months out. It is a bit unsettling to wait 2 months as this cancer is very aggressive
and known to spread. However, we have no choice but to wait and trust in the Lord that it will not spread. Our
prayer is that the spot will not show up on the upcoming scans or that is would grow to the absolute minimum to perform a
biopsy. We cannot treat it based on assumption. Ideally, we would prefer to have another MIBG scan performed at
one month, but it is not feasible unless there is a valid reason to do one sooner than 2 months. Princeton has a follow
up appointment in March to check his labs and catecholamine levels. These tests can tell us a lot if the numbers
are off. Catechoalmines are found in the urine. Neuoblastoma cells put off a secretion found in the urine catecholamines.
The normal level is 13. However, if the normal level is elevated, it can be a good indicator there are Neuroblastoma
cells present in the body. Princeton's current level is 16.3. His elevation is not that high right now, meaning
his level could be affected by a multitude of things not related to cancer. However, if it continues to elevate, it
is a good sign of cancer growth.
We are praying the MIBG had false uptake and the scans will come back clear
in April. This does happen occasionally. Sometimes things are meant to look a certain way to shake our faith and
create fear. We are not going to let that happen. We must stand strong for Princeton and each other. As
we always say, "God has this." God always says to let the worrying to Him. Why waste time worrying about
things we cannot control. Instead, we are going to continue putting our energy into enjoying our family, making a difference
in the lives of others, and fighting to find a cure.
Lastly, Princeton was to have his port removed yesterday.
It stopped working and we were believing the scans would come back clear. However, based on the concern of the
spot on his head doctors decided to replace his port with a new one. His surgery went well. However, he was very
saddened to have another port. He is getting tired and beginning to understand what cancer is doing to his body. It
is heartbreaking to have him look in our eyes wondering why he has to keep going through this and there is nothing we can
do to stop it. It is difficult and extremely painful to hear him say he does not want to do this anymore. He wants to
be a normal 4 year old playing and enjoying life, not fighting for his life.
Please continue praying for
the suspicious spot on Princeton's head. He needs a break. Your prayers are working and we appreciate every single one.
Princeton was diagnosed
with Stage IV Neuroblastoma, an aggressive form of childhood cancer, in December 2011 at the age of 2.
At diagnosis, the cancer had metastizized and was found throughout his body. He underwent 15 months of intensive treatment
at Arnold Palmer Children's Hospital, Orlando Florida. His treatment consisted of 6 rounds of high dose chemotherapy, 10
surgeries, a stem cell transplant, 12 rounds of radiation and 6 cycles of immunotherapy. The treatment was grueling and
difficult for Princeton's small body to handle. He finished treatment in March 2013. June 2013, Princeton relapsed. He
again underwent 6 rounds of chemotherapy and 12 rounds of radiation. He went into remission in April 2014.We
know God is greater than cancer and will cure him of this disease. We are reminded in Jeremiah 30:17 "But I will
restore you to health and heal your wounds, declares the Lord." God is the great physician and we know He will
get the glory! Thank you in advance for your prayers.
This website is designed to keep you
informed on Princeton's progress and make donations to the family. Treating Neruoblastoma is a full time job that requires
long periods of hospital stays and travel. Because this form of cancer is aggressive the treatment also has to be
aggressive. The family appreciates your support and donations.