Jack – Rhabdomyosarcoma

Jack was diagnosed with Alveolar Rhabdomyosarcoma in July 2015.

Jack - Rhabdomyosarcoma
Jack

He underwent 11 cycles of Chemo (IVADO) and 26 sessions of radiotherapy. This initial treatment saw tumours disappear.

However, Alveolar Rhabdomyosarcoma (also known as ARMS) is very aggressive. Sadly, the cancer returned very quickly, and Jack lost his brave fight in July 2016, aged 19.

Here are his own  words….

‘My name is Jack, I’m 19 years old. I became ill last year whilst taking my A Levels. After initial problems with diagnosis, I was confirmed as having a type of soft tissue sarcoma (rhabdomyosarcoma). Initial treatments were gruelling but positive. However, soon after treatments ended, the sarcomas came back, hard. The doctors now tell me that they can’t cure me.

Sarcomas are relatively rare but are often the main cancers to affect teenagers like me. Many of my friends who are fellow patients also have this same illness. I am determined to help research into sarcomas and am already taking part in one research project, but we need more funding. Research will help us better understand the causes and identify improved treatments, saving young lives in the future.

I’m a private person and it’s been a big decision for me to share this publicly, but it’s the right thing to do. So please, please help.


Please make a donation, share my appeal with as many people as you can, especially any businesses who can help.

With your generosity, I might be able to make a difference. Help me to help others.


Thank you
Jack’

A much loved and loving young man, a bright devoted and caring son and a loyal friend with so much to live for and so many dreams. Only weeks away from starting at university when the disease took that away from him. Jack felt passionately that research into RMS was essential in order to save other young people in his situation.

His website has raised over £87K to date (October 2017).

Our thoughts are with his family and we are grateful to them for allowing us to share Jack’s story to help us raise awareness.

Ziggy Zoo and Betty Too

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Steven – Rhabdomyosarcoma AND Osteosarcoma

Our son was first diagnosed with Rhabdomysarcoma in 2006. He was six years old. Up to that point he had been a healthy child and so the doctors initially thought he had tonsillitis. Rhabdomyosarcoma is very aggressive soft tissue cancer and was allowed to grow in his sinus cavity, unchecked, for many months. Eventually his symptoms of nasal discharge and breathing problems became so severe that he had a CT scan at our local hospital. The scan showed the “mass” attached to his soft palate. He then went to Great Ormond Street Hospital for further tests and a biopsy, and that confirmed Alveolar Rhabdomyosarcoma. Following that diagnosis he started treatment immediately, and after 12 months of chemotherapy and six weeks radiotherapy he was in remission.

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Steven during radiotherapy

In 2014 however, he had a painful lump develop on his cheek. He was still having regular checks at Great Ormond Street and being monitored for late side effects. In view of his past history, there was no delay in organising a scan. The doctors had already warned us that it was likely he had another tumour. He had a biopsy and was diagnosed with Osteosarcoma (bone cancer). Steven needed more chemotherapy and many hours of surgery before he went into remission again.

The Osteosarcoma was caused by the radiotherapy he had for the first tumour.

This is just a brief outline of our son’s story. We shall look at it in more detail later.

If you would tell us about your child’s cancer, or you are a childhood cancer survivor, please get in touch and we would be very happy to give you a feature on our blog and later on the radio channel.

Best wishes

Ziggy Zoo and Betty Too