Last week offered up some good news for 2-year-old Kelsi Caten. After almost six months of treatment for stage four neuroblastoma, recent scans show no active cancer.
“We feel so grateful to all the churches who are praying for Kelsi in their congregations and have her on their prayer rolls,” said her mother, Rosanne Caten. “We know the prayers are being heard. The support from the community has been such a comfort to us. Thank you to everyone.”
Kelsi was diagnosed on July 27, 2011 with stage four neuroblastoma, a high-risk cancer. Since that time, she has had four major surgeries, six rounds of chemotherapy, received over 20 blood transfusions, and spent over 80 days in-patient at Vanderbilt Children’s Hospital.
Prior to treatment, scans using radioactive dye depicted tumors in her right jaw, head, bones, nasal passages, mouth and adrenal glands. The latest scan showed no living cancerous cells. Her kidneys are functioning normally, a concern after chemotherapy.
While the news is good, Kelsi is not out of the woods. She has three more stages in her treatment plan, which could take up to 11 months to complete. The clear scan puts an end to the treatment she has undertaken in the last six months and begins the next stage — two stem cell transplants.
“Stem cell transplants will require four weeks hospitalization for each transplant, with one month recovery in between,” said Rosanne of the treatment which began yesterday. “Basically, they wipe out every cell in your body. Then they give you stem cells to rejuvenate you so your body will grow its own stem cells.”
Then Kelsi will then have to endure radiation treatment and six months of antibodies.
Updates on Kelsi can be obtained through www.caringbridge.org. Visit her site by typing in “kelsicaten” in the space provided. Messages of support can be left on the site.
“We appreciate the kindness everyone has shown,” said Rosanne. “Kelsi is a little trooper. We’re going into this next stage of treatment in the best way possible, with no active cancer cells.”