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'Wilms Tumour Research Fund
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Ethan's Story

Ethan age 4 3/4 was diagnosed with Wilms tumour on the 20th March 2013. When Ethan was 3 1/2 his belly would distend/swell frequently but then return to normal. The doctors thought that it was just his immature tummy muscles not holding his stomach contents in. His mother didn’t agree with this and she also noticed he would also complain of his tummy aching on occasions but doctor thought that this was most likely due to diet/bowels/constipation etc.  He also had many temperatures during this time that his mum had consulted doctors about, but this was put down to a virus/infection.  

However, in February 2013, after he was very ill for a week after having a 24 hour 'sickness bug', it was apparent that something wasn't right. He had a constant swollen abdomen, high temperature that would come and go over days, night sweats, loss of appetite and rapid weight loss, and a rash that would disappear and reappear and just being generally unwell.  Initially, the doctor thought it was celiac disease but blood tests ruled this out. Other routine blood tests revealed that Ethan was anemic but nothing more. It was over a week that the swelling in Ethan's abdomen seemed to be more prominent on the left side and on another visit to our GP; it was thought he had an enlarged spleen or maybe glandular fever as Ethan had a sore throat at one stage during this time.

They were then sent to have more blood tests to confirm their suspicions. His mum was not convinced and asked the GP what would he do if the results came back negative, he was confident that he was right but said he'd refer us to a pediatrician at our local hospital. The results did come back negative and so after a referral to a pediatrician, more blood tests, an x ray and then an ultrasound the week beginning of March 2013, they had found a mass.

From there, we were referred to Birmingham's children's hospital on 12th March where his mum was told it was cancer; they just needed to find out which one. It was the 20th he was then diagnosed with stage II Wilm's with favourable histology. He commenced a four week course of Vincristine and Dactomycin and then underwent surgery and had his tumour and left kidney removed successfully on the 22nd April 2013.

He has now completed a 27 week course of chemotherapy with the same treatment regime as pre-surgery (Vincristine & Dactomycin) and is still smiling! Good luck Ethan!

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