Supergirl Shanaya the First Battles Ewing Sarcoma ~ Part III

Young Shanaya took to her battle with cancer as she does everything else – with a determined smile, even when she was really not feeling well.

Mommy was there with her in the hospital every step of the way, and because Shanaya is Daddy’s Girl, so was her daddy Shane whenever he could be.

Unfortunately, due to the chemotherapy treatments, Shanaya lost her beautiful long hair, but she was not fazed….

No hair not going to stop me from being the diva princess I am. I am the one ‘n only Shanaya the First!

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Supergirl Shanaya the First Battles Ewing Sarcoma ~ Part II

So today we continue with Shanaya’s story as promised…

Having no luck in resolving the problem of the swelling and pain in Shanaya’s arm, her worried parents eventually resorted to sending the specialist a photo of her arm on the 5th September, as it was not looking at all normal.

The specialist referred Shanaya to yet another orthopaedic doctor, who ordered more x-rays and advised Shane and Lee-Anne that it looked to him like Shanaya had a bone tumour but told them that he would need to do a biopsy with full histology to confirm it.

On the 7th September, little Shanaya underwent the biopsy, an MRI, a CT-Scan, more X-rays, and various blood tests.

The doctor got the histology results on 13th September, 2017 and they confirmed that she had Stage 4 Ewing Sarcoma, a rare bone cancer. The bottom half of her left humerus had been eaten away; the top part of the left humerus was fractured and there were metastasis in both her lungs.

Shanaya was then referred to the Oncology unit at which she is still being treated.

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Supergirl Shanaya the First Battles Ewing Sarcoma ~ Part I

Many of you on our Facebook Page are familiar with the battle that Shanaya, aka our 🦋 Butterfly Princess 🦋 is currently facing, together with her very brave parents, against Ewing Sarcoma.

Most of you, though, do not know the full story, and because it is so important to share the stories of our Little Fighters so that others may learn, and because Shanaya is facing overcoming another massive hurdle very soon, we will be sharing her story and some insights into fighting this Childhood Cancer over the next two weeks….

Thanks to Shanaya’s Family for allowing the Little Fighters Cancer  Trust to publish her story in order to create Childhood Cancer Awareness and perhaps offer some insight to other parents who are going through the same battle.

Shanaya was born on the 1st November 2013 to parents Shane and Lee-Anne, and soon melted everyone’s hearts… she was a typical little princess and had a completely uneventful childhood as far as illnesses go, until one night in April 2017…

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February 15th is International Childhood Cancer Day

Today, February 15th is International Childhood Cancer Day; a day on which individuals across the globe create awareness around the fact that cancer does not discriminate by age.

International Childhood Cancer Day is based on Childhood Cancer International’s (CCI) core belief that every child with cancer deserves the best possible medical and psychosocial care, regardless of country of origin, race, financial status or  social class. It is also anchored on the premise that childhood cancer deaths are avoidable, with timely and accurate diagnosis, availability and  access to proper treatment and care as well as affordable essential medicines.

Today we also think about all the children who are fighting cancer and their families and wish them Love, Light & Healing and remember all our Little Fighters who lost the battle and their Loved Ones, and wish them Love, Light & Strength.

For far too long, the rights and needs of children/adolescents with cancer have been marginalised and neglected. While deaths due to infectious diseases have been significantly reduced, deaths due to childhood cancer are increasing.

Every day 700 children and adolescents below the age of 20 are diagnosed with cancer. Of the 250 000 diagnosed with cancer each year, about 90 000 of them will lose their lives to the disease.

Childhood cancer remains the leading cause of death by disease for children under the age of 15.

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Terminal Synovial Sarcoma Teenager Marries Childhood Sweetheart

What a tale of an all-encompassing love that is somewhat Romeo & Juliet-esque in that it will also be so short-lived – a tale of True Love shared with you on this Valentine’s Day.

For the past year and a half, 19-year-old Dustin Snyder has been battling a rare form of cancer called synovial sarcoma — undergoing treatments to remove the tumors, only to watch them return and ravage his body.

One day before Dustin’s 18th birthday, he was diagnosed with a rare form of cancer. Doctors discovered the cancer in his left lung, which is rare.

Synovial sarcoma is a slow-growing cancer that typically attacks the soft tissues near large joints and, in some cases, is initially misdiagnosed as arthritis or bursitis, according to the Mayo Clinic. Sometimes, however, it can develop in the kidneys and lungs.

The goal is to remove the cancer and a margin of healthy tissue around it,” according to the clinic. “This can sometimes mean the removal of an entire muscle or muscle group, or even amputation.”

Snyder’s mother said he underwent chemotherapy and radiation “hoping to save the lung.” But several months later, doctors had to remove it.

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New Shoes & Winter Clothing Donations Urgently Needed

LFCT Barefoot for A Day logoIt is once again that time of the year when we ask you to go barefoot for a day so that our Children with Cancer do not have to!

Barefoot for a Day is an Annual Project that LFCT started in 2013, and every year we ask you to join us in collecting/donating shoes for our Little Fighters in hospital, at home and in Places of Safety.

This year we are combining our Barefoot for a Day  project with our Snug as a Bug Project into one big project this year. That way we can make our deliveries to the hospital wards, day clinics and to our Little Fighters and their siblings at home before the chill of winter sets in, thereby avoiding any between-season or change-of-season sniffles, which are very dangerous for Children with Cancer with their impaired immune systems.

WE URGENTLY Need YOU To Donate/Collect NEW Shoes & NEW Warm Winter Clothing for our Little Fighters.

Get your Friends involved, get your Family involved, get your Work involved, get your School involved – just think how many people you know…. if only a few of them donate one item of clothing or one pair of shoes, or the financial equivalent, we will have MORE than enough for ALL our Little Fighters.



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Chernobyl Disaster Possibly Linked With Rare Cancer 30 Years Later

Health care practitioners were surprised when they saw 10 cases of a very rare cancer in the New York City area. As it turned out, most of the patients weren’t originally from New York.

Vitreoretinal lymphoma is an extremely rare disease. So rare, in fact, that when 10 cases were found over a four-year span near New York City, physicians began to think that there must be some connection between the cases.

Sanford Kempin, M.D., assistant professor at Mount Sinai Health System, and his colleagues began to dig in a bit deeper with the help of Roxana Moslehi, Ph.D., associate professor in the University at Albany State University of New York, School of Public Health.

Sure enough, it was found that six of the 10 patients had a peculiar common denominator: they all lived near the Chernobyl nuclear power facility during the 1986 radioactive disaster.

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Spoils, Giggles, Smiles & Tears at Greys Hospital

We just luuurvve our Little Fighters Cancer Trust Representatives – they do SUCH great work and we would not be able to do what we do without our volunteers and LFCT Reps.

Yesterday our Pietermaritzburg Rep, Lauren Hook, did a quick visit to Greys Hospital to bring some joy to all the Little Fighters there and was rewarded with broad smiles and infectious giggles.

Lauren does this regularly once a month and is always cheered by the gratefulness shown by the children as well as the mothers/carers for the little gifts for the kids. There is basically one ward and in it are children of all ages who really get very bored so any games, puzzles etc are always warmly welcomed.

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Life Insights from Terminally Ill Children – Tissues Required

life lessons from kids quote - Paulo Coelho

Dr. Alastair McAlpine, a palliative pediatrician from Cape Town who works at pediatric palliative care centre PaedsPal, decided that, seeing that young children generally have plenty of wisdom to offer about the little things in life, he would see if they also have insights to offer about life’s bigger problems, the questions that all humans have about life’s purpose and meaning?

To this end, he decided to present a few of these bigger philosophical questions to the young, terminally ill children under his care as part of an assignment in his palliative care diploma program at the University of Cape Town.

The pediatrician shared the results in a series of tweets last week and boy, did they  rack up plenty of retweets and tears!

Be warned!! Have a box of tissues at hand and do not be surprised if the “ugly cry” makes an appearance!


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February 4th – World Cancer Day

The 4th February each year is World Cancer Day (WCD). The 3 year theme, “We Can. I Can” concludes in 2018, with the focus being on “inspiring healthy communities”.

We can. I can” explores how everyone – together and individually – can do their part to reduce the global burden of cancer. The campaign outlines actions that communities and individuals can take to save lives by achieving greater equity in cancer care and making fighting cancer a priority at the highest political levels.

World Cancer Day aims to save lives by raising awareness and educating the population about cancer. The day also serves to pressure governments and individuals to take action in order to prevent, treat and control cancers. Cancer is a heterogeneous group of diseases that result from abnormal cell growth and have the potential to spread to other parts of the body.

On February 4, 2000, World Cancer Day was officially established by the Paris Charter at the World Summit Against Cancer for the New Millennium in Paris.  The Paris Charter sought to promote research for a cure, prevention, services for patients and support from the global community.

Just as cancer affects everyone in different ways, all people have the power to take various actions to reduce the impact that cancer has on individuals, families and communities.

World Cancer Day is a chance to reflect on what you can do, make a pledge and take action. Whatever you choose to do ‘We can. I can.’ make a difference to the fight against cancer.

Cancer is a disease that knows no boundaries and has, or will,
affect us all either directly or indirectly during our lifetime.

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