Filed underChristmas Is For Children Radiothon
Two-year-old Bennett is happy little boy who has B-cell Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia. Hear Bennett’s story
A few days after Bennett’s one year check-up, his mom noticed a few red spots on his lower abdomen. She thought he might be developing a rash, but the next day the rash had spread to other parts of his body.
On Saturday, Bennett woke up with a fever and he just didn’t look well. His dad, Keith, took him to his pediatrician and they determined that the red spots were petechiae, which can indicate a problem with his bone marrow. His blood work came back abnormal – his white blood count was extremely high. They sent them to Children’s where he underwent another blood test, which confirmed that their 13-month-old son had leukemia.
Two days later they learned that he had ALL. His particular case was categorized as high risk (meaning he underwent a more intense chemotherapy treatment for the first 8-9 months), and his treatment would last about 3 1/2 years.
“We trust Children’s,” said Kirsa. “When he was discharged one week after his diagnosis, tears welled up in my eyes because I was so worried that I wouldn’t be able to provide him with the same level of care he received while he was at Children’s.”
Bennett is currently in the long-term maintenance phase of his treatment, which will end July 2014. He can pretty much do anything that any other kid can do except he has to take a lot of medicine. He takes steroids one week every month, chemo every night, another chemo drug every Thursday, antibiotics three days a week, he comes to Children’s once a month for a lumbar puncture and chemo through his port.
“A few years ago I never would’ve thought that I’d be in these shoes,” Kirsa said. “I’m so grateful for this hospital and everything they’ve done for our family.”