On Childhood Cancer (Awareness Month Special)

CrimsonShark
Okay, it's not a surprise we know what cancer is. It's a disease where your growth cells go abnormal and proceed to spread and infect parts of your body. And by parts, there are several functions of cancer, from the brain to the lungs, stomach and so on forth. And it is true that a sizable number of people who have been diagnosed with cancer happen to be adults, although young adults are just as susceptible.

However, there is a group that isn't exactly taken too seriously and for the most part, isn't really given prominence. It's children. Aged right from birth to prior to becoming a young adult. It's Pediatric or Childhood Cancer.

Firstly, kids aren't the most susceptible individuals to be diagnosed, but it doesn't mean it's rare. Heck, about ten thousand children would get diagnosed according to a statistic in 2016, and a thousand would ultimately pass away. And ten thousand isn't a small number, and despite what you're given, Childhood Cancer is NOT rare. It's great to see the investment put into Lung Cancer and Breast Cancer for example, but here is what really pisses me off.

Childhood Cancer only gets a funding of 3.8% in the NCI (National Cancer Institute)

Like, really. That's how little the NCI cares for the diagnosis for children. You're gonna look up at a few morals when you consider it. If we do not take care of and provide for the children, we're going to get stagnant and we'll doom ourselves. And if that happens, the only one to blame is yourself and you'll spend every second crying and be lamenting about how inconsiderate you were. And you don't want that. It also doesn't help that a complete joke like Donald Trump would launder money meant to help in research and donations meant for Pediatric Cancer into his own business. If you think the 45th U.S president is going to benefit, you might want to look at this and have a thought.

Another point to add up is that fact that while over a thousand medications have been developed to combat cancer, only three of those are targeted towards children. Meanwhile, kids have to experience chemotherapy and medical injections and drugs. These might be able to put a stop to cancer spreading (The child would be declared NED (No evidence of disease) or cancer free), but it must be known that there are side effects, and at times, a child would die due to the treatment that was used to stopping cancer. Even then, the whole process could be repeated if the diagnosed cancer comes back (It's called relapsing) and the chances of survival could either be the same or slimmer.

There are different types of cancer that affect children. There's Neuroblastoma, Ewing's Sarcoma, Rhabdomyosarcoma and more. But the worst is Diffuse Intrinsic Pontine Glioma (Or DIPG). I've made a blog post on DIPG, so for more information, you could read it there.

I should be nothing that I would like to mention some individuals who were diagnosed with cancer as children. And I'm sorry if I make you despondent. I'm not intending to make you sad, but rather give you some information and ultimately get you to support a cause (Albeit what I'm going to mention is going to make me and you emotional anyway...).

  • Brooks Blackmore: 5-year-old Brooks was discovered to be diagnosed with a pair of inoperable stage four astrocytoma's on June 13th, 2015. He was given radiation therapy every 6 weeks and oral chemotherapy every month. Unfortunately on March 16th, 2016, a new cervical tumor was discovered in Brooks, which was invulnerable to radiation and was too risky to be treated. Brooks lost his life on May 21st, 2016 in the arms of his parents and his younger twin siblings. His mother Tracey has dedicated Brooks's life to advocating for children who have cancer and to raise awareness and provide sufficient funding in Pediatric Cancer. A memorial website, BeBrooksBrave is available for those who are interested in Brooks's life and the battle against cancer, alongside an Instagram page and a St, Baldrick's fundraiser.
  • Elena Desserich: Elena was diagnosed with DIPG in 2006 at age 5. She was expected to only live up to 135 days, but Elena lived up to 255 days, passing away on August 11th, 2007 at age 6. During her last days, Elena drew and wrote notes as a sign of love and affection towards her parents and younger sister Grace. These notes were beginning to be discovered sometime after her death. Her story has been adapted into a memorial book called "Notes Left Behind" detailing Elena's days when she was diagnosed and displaying a good number of her notes. Elena's parents have set up a foundation known as "The Cure Starts Now" dedicated to raising awareness and providing enough money to fund for Childhood Cancer.
  • Gabriella Miller: Gabriella Miller died on October 26th, 2013 from DIPG at age 10. She became an activist, touring parts of the United States in an attempt to raise awareness on Brain Cancer. An awareness campaign, "Smashing Walnuts" was set up in her honor to continue her advocation posthumously, in an attempt to "Crack the Cure" for Pediatric Brain Cancer.
  • Ellie Walton: Ellie was diagnosed with desmoplastic infantile ganglioglioma/astrocytoma when she was only 4 months old. She received 7 rounds of chemotherapy, but this resulted in the diagnosis of hydrocephalus and neuropathy. Over the course, Ellie's condition fluctuated, from getting better to worse. She suffered from several side effects such as leg pain and constant throw ups. Ultimately, Ellie tumor had mutated to Glioblastoma on 2016. Ellie passed away on January 15th, 2017 at age 4 after several rounds of chemotherapy, radiation, and surgeries. Her journey can be further explored via her Instagram memorial page.
  • Derek Cantor: Derek Cantor was born on November 17, 2016. On birth, a noticeable tumor was found on his right jaw. He was diagnosed with Rhabdomyosarcoma immediately. Derek's life was a noticeably painful and devastating one as tumors began to spread around his body. Derek's body ultimately couldn't handle it anymore and he passed away on April 23rd, 2017 at only 5 months old.
  • Trucker Dukes: 3-year-old Trucker Dukes was diagnosed with neuroblastoma and passed away on March 3rd, 2017. During this time, Trucker went through 5 rounds of chemotherapy and seven more, prior to having a tumor resection surgery. He later had brain surgery, following a relapse and needed immunotherapy drugs on his leg. Because of his love of firefighters and his desire to be one, Trucker was posthumously honored as a firefighter. Trucker's story can be seen on the TeamTrucker website or on his Instagram memorial page.
  • Kylie Myers: 11-year-old Kylie Myers was diagnosed with Ewing's Sarcoma in April 2014. She sustained several tumors on her lungs, jaws, and thighs during her fight. She received treatment via chemotherapy and later radiation. It ultimately culminated when soft tissue was discovered on her clavicle, resulting in her being taken to hospice. Kylie died on February 13th, 2015, 11 days shy of her 13th birthday. Kylie loved Broadway and was interviewed for The Truth 365. A public service announcement by the Truth 365 in honor of Kylie was critically acclaimed and won them an Emmy Award. Kylie's father, Mark Myers wrote an autobiographical memoir in her memory titled "Missing Kylie".
  • Myles Kaleb: Myles was diagnosed with DIPG only a month after his birth. Miraculously, his tumor has been stable, although he still needs occasional chemotherapy to check on the DIPG tumor, he has not received radiation as of yet. Myles's mother Sara has kept updating on Myles since then via Facebook, Instagram and a fundraiser. He is still fighting DIPG and is doing well for now.
  • Gabi Shull: Gabi Shull was diagnosed with Osteosarcoma in early 2011 shortly after falling accidentally during ice-skating. Gabi entered chemotherapy to shrink the tumor to a certain size to be operated. Gabi was given options for amputation and treatments to stop the tumor from spreading before being offered a chance to be treated via rotationplasty. Although cancer-free, Gabi had her right leg amputated, then having the foot rotated to about 180 degrees and reattached to the upper leg with the ankles operated as a knee. Gabi would go on to become a proficient dancer and an advocate for The Truth 365 organization. Currently, now 16 and 4 years cancer-free, Gabi seeks to raise awareness for Pediatric Cancer whilst also pursuing her dreams in becoming a professional dancer.

I could list a lot more, but I guess that should be sizable enough for some education. Regardless, these kids are beautiful and deserve to be looked up to and for them to be remembered. In addition, here are some extra facts about Childhood Cancer (Note that these are from other sources):

  • Childhood Cancer kills more children than asthma, cystic fibrosis, diabetes and Pediatric Aids, Combined.

  • There are ONLY 3 new drugs developed for Childhood Cancer. There are over a hundred for adults with different types, such as lungs, stomach, etc.

  • The American Cancer Society directs their efforts on Pediatric Cancer by JUST 1%! Pathetic...

  • One in five children diagnosed would pass away from cancer.

  • 80% of the children diagnosed are from the developing world (E.g India, Pakistan, Brazil, Egypt, etc.). Hence, it is a global issue.

  • About 250,000 under 20 will be diagnosed every year

With this, I support my statement that Childhood Cancer needs to be taken seriously. What if a someone whose child is diagnosed with cancer happens to read this? It could be you, for all I know. The biggest sin of it all is how underfunded the topic is and how little the funding and awareness gets compared to other causes. It's saddening for all I know.

And here is where I conclude my post. I hope you readers would get to understand how much of an issue Childhood Cancer is and how it could potentially become a bigger problem if nothing about is done about it in the near-future. This is an awareness post, and I would like to thank anyone who supports me and I would like to share my condolences to the parents who have lost a child to cancer, including those whose names I've listed and those whom I haven't.

Keep in mind that although a medical term, this can become a social issue as well. As a social critic, I think it would benefit if people would invest interest in Childhood Cancer and raise awareness, allowing for more funding and eventually, a bigger cure and a better future for everyone. and remember, if we're depraved for children, you might have nothing left to fight for.

Thanks for reading, and for more info, do message me :).

Comments

Nice awareness post. It is sad to see that many children with cancer are being overlooked when they deserve just as much chance at treatment and survival as any other person. And to see so little money be put into funding research to help combat childhood cancer along with the fact that even some of that money is being stolen away just to fund a corrupt corporate executive's family business sickens me. All these statistics showing how much little attention is given to treating pediatric cancer is almost depressing.

That said, it warms my heart every time you spread awareness of a major issue in our world and try to help in any way possible. It truly does. - ModernSpongeBobSucks

I read pretty much all except for a few kids (BUNCH of info), it's sad pediatric cancer get's so little attention. Horrible that these kids are being forgotten in such a needful time... The victims have my prayers, god bless the poor things. This issue in general usually is overlooked to a degree anyway.
Also, thank you for your time in research and devotion in this topic. And most you do, really! - EliHbk

This makes me shed a tear - visitor

Very good post. Just the kind we really need here. - visitor

Agreed - Skullkid755

One of the best posts I've seen here for a long time. - WonkeyDude98

Like I said on our PM chat: Wonderful. - DCfnaf

This is the best post ever on TTT. - Cartoonfan202

tru - EliHbk

I'm crying - TwilightKitsune

Can't blame ya - visitor

I almost cried reading this. It’s really sad how things like this happen. - visitor

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