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Wishing You A Joyous Festive Season


The Little Fighters Cancer Trust would like to thank every one of our Donors, Supporters, Ambassadors, Volunteers & Staff for everything that YOU have done to make the lives of our Little Fighters and their Families just that bit easier throughout 2018.

This has been a very difficult year for most people, but thanks to you all, LFCT managed to still take care of the most vulnerable children and their families with advice, information, love and practical assistance.

We did various outreaches to our Little Fighters in hospital as well as at home, and apart from the thousands of presents, clothes, blankest and snack-packs,  we also managed to send every one of our registered families a Family Care Package every month so that they at least had all the basics plus some toys for all the kids in the family.

We also had a lovely Christmas Party (sponsored by the Lions, Paarl) for our local Little Fighters and their Families and every Little Fighter plus each of their siblings – Nationally – were sent a lovely Christmas present together with the Family Festive Season Care Package.

Thanks to your donations and thanks to #KargoInternational, there will be Joy and Feasting in all our Registered Little Fighter Families this Festive Season.

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AR App Helping Child Cancer Patients Cope with Anxiety


picture of characters in appThe Paediatric Brain Tumor Foundation’s app is bringing imaginary friends to life in hospitals and cancer treatment centers.

A three-eared rabbit stands on Bridgette Czarnecki’s hospital bed. He playfully wiggles his ear and adjusts his yellow bow tie.

You’re stronger than you know,” he tells the 8-year-old. “I wish I was that strong.”

A flying pink-haired cow swoops in, pirouetting in the air. “Believe in yourself,” she says in a gentle voice. “I sure do.”

Nearby a friendly green monster smiles and waves. “Never give up, kid. Never give up.”

They’re all part of the Imaginary Friend Society, and they are exactly as billed: a figment of the imagination. For Czarnecki, who was diagnosed with a brain tumor in November 2017, they were a welcome distraction from the stress and anxiety of MRIs and chemotherapy while she was treated at the Children’s Hospital Los Angeles through February.

Czarnecki summoned the characters from a touchscreen above her hospital bed and the Imaginary Friend Society app developed by the Pediatric Brain Tumor Foundation. The app uses augmented reality, which overlays digital images on top of what you’re seeing in the real world.

It makes me feel happy,” Czarnecki tells me.

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What is the Expected Life Span of Childhood Brain Tumour Cancer?


Brain Cancer Awareness RibbonWhat is my child’s prognosis?” This seemingly simple but critical question is often among the first that parents will ask their child’s oncologist after hearing that their child has been diagnosed with cancer.

Yet, while the question may be simple, answering it can be extremely complicated. In general terms, oncologists can provide statistics relating to 5-year survival rates for many different types of brain tumours in children.

These general statistics, however, cannot predict an outcome for any one child. Each child’s individual prognosis will depend on the unique circumstances of their tumor and its response to treatment.

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Smartphone App Reduces Pain, Hospital Visits for Cancer Survivors


A smartphone app that includes artificial intelligence elements may be able to reduce the effects of cancer-related pain, according to recent research presented at the 2018 American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) Palliative and Supportive Care in Oncology Symposium.

The app, named ePAL, was designed and studied as part of a collaboration between Partners HealthCare Pivot Labs, the Massachusetts General Hospital Division of Palliative Care, and the Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center.

“There is a significant shortage of palliative care providers, which will only worsen in the future as our population ages,” lead study author Mihir M. Kamdar, M.D., associate director of the Division of Palliative Care and an interventional pain physician at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, said in a statement. “This is one of the reasons why technology solutions to help manage palliative care challenges, such as cancer pain, are so important.”

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New Service Transforms Childhood Cancer Treatment


 

Professor Gareth Veal. Credit: Newcastle University

Children with cancer in the UK are to benefit nationally from a service which for the first time will allow doctors to personalise their treatment.

The therapeutic drug monitoring service, developed by Newcastle University experts, allows clinicians to obtain vital information about how much chemotherapy individual young patients should receive.

Youngsters diagnosed with cancer, including infants in the first weeks of life, can be particularly hard to treat as it is difficult to know how much chemotherapy to give.

Doctors sometimes have to make tough decisions about the most appropriate dose of a drug, without enough scientific information to help them decide on the best course of action.

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Honouring Kyle Adams – 👼 Forever 14 👼


It is with overwhelming sadness and aching hearts that today we have to share with you the heartbreaking news that Teen Fighter Kyle Adams earned his Angel Wings last night, 25th November, 2018.

Rest in Peace, Kyle ^Forever 14^

Kyle Adams was diagnosed with Osteosarcoma in 2016 and went through harsh treatment, more than one operation, and had his leg amputated and was eventually fitted with a prosthetic leg.

Kyle fought bravely and won his fight – he was always there with a smile and won the hearts of many of our LFCT Family – he was also an ambassador for LFCT and helped out various times, including helping to deliver Mothers’ Day presents to all the mommies in Tygerberg Hospital, where he was receiving treatment, in 2017.

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What is Interventional Radiology for Paediatric Cancer Patients?


Interventional radiology offers a set of minimally invasive procedures for diagnosis, treatment, and palliative care for certain diseases, such as cancer.

This subspecialty in interventional radiology is also known as interventional oncology.

These procedures can be alternative options to open biopsies and surgeries, and are typically shorter, relatively less risky and associated with faster recovery.

Interventional oncology uses image-guided tools much like the GPS system to target the tumour area and perform diagnostic and therapeutic procedures in patients through the use of catheters, needles, and tiny probes (tiny instruments inserted into small incisions or natural body openings).

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Should You Use Hydrogen Peroxide to Treat Cancer?


Hydrogen peroxide is often used to whiten teeth, treat minor cuts and scrapes, or dye one’s hair. Some individuals claim that hydrogen peroxide can also help cure cancer, but what does the research say?

Claims that hydrogen peroxide can also help cure cancer stem from the fact that it is an oxidising liquid, which means it gives off oxygen. Low oxygen levels can cause cancer, and some people think that exposing cancer cells to high levels of oxygen will prevent them from growing and they will die.

This type of therapy is often known as oxy medicine, oxidology, or oxidative therapy.

No current research suggests hydrogen peroxide has any effect on cancer cells. There are, however, many warnings against using it internally.

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Modern Day Romeo & Juliet has Happy Ending


Back in the late 1980s, young Joel Alsup, a 7-year-old from Chattanooga, was diagnosed with Osteosarcoma at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, which would result in the amputation of his right arm.

In 1991, 10-year-old Lindsey Wilkerson from Crane, Mo. was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukaemia at the same hospital.

The two frightened children overcame childhood cancer to become friends, best friends, then husband and wife.

Our families would actually sit in the waiting room and visit while she was in treatment and I was coming back for checkups,” Joel says.

I don’t think they even knew each other’s names then. We had no idea where it would end,” said Lindsey’s mother.

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More than just Treatments needed for Childhood Cancer


Connor Webb developed a lump on his right thumb that raised concerns with his mother, Kim, but when queried about it, doctors told her not to worry about it and to just “take care of it whenever.”

Eventually though, the lump doubled in size, prompting surgery to remove it, but the subsequent phone call from the doctor stunned Kim – Connor had been diagnosed with epithelioid sarcoma, a slow-growing soft-tissue cancer.

After a month of tests and scans, Connor underwent a full resection of the tumour plus a bit of surrounding tissue to prevent recurrence and regained full use of his thumb. Later CT and MRI scans show no evidence of disease (NED).

This has, however, not put his mother at ease, as epithelioid sarcoma has a very ugly secret…

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