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Juliana’s Story

Juliana was diagnosed with stage 3, group 3 Alveolar Rhabdomyosarcoma on 3/7/07. She had 6 weeks of radiation therapy and 14 rounds of chemotherapy. Julie relapsed on 3/17/11 and received another 12 rounds of chemotherapy and 5 more weeks of radiation therapy. Julie relapsed a second time on 6/5/12 and received 12 more rounds of chemotherapy and 10 more weeks of radiation therapy. She relapsed a third time 3/17/14 and after surgery that removed 90% of the new tumor had five more weeks of radiation therapy and two more rounds of chemotherapy. She is now on oral chemotherapy and will remain on it for the foreseeable future. Please keep Julie in your prayers!




Until Sunday, February 18, 2007 we had no idea there was anything wrong with our beautiful, happy, confident five-year-old daughter. She came into our room that morning complaining about a "bump" under her right arm. The bump turned out to be a swollen lymph node and we discovered the next day at the pediatrician's office that she also had a tumor on her right forearm. After x-rays and an MRI, we received that awful call from the doctor--it appeared the tumor was cancerous and that it had matastisized to the lymph node. The next two weeks went by in a blur as we drove back and forth each day to the hospital for exams, blood work, numerous scans, a biopsy and surgery. Julie's treatment will include weekly chemotherapy for 42 weeks, daily radiation for six weeks and possibly more surgery to remove the tumor after is shrinks.

We adopted Julie from Minsk, Belarus on August 26, 2003 when she was 20 months old. We believe that God placed her in our family for a reason. Had she remained in the orphanage in Belarus, she would not have received treatment for her cancer. Instead, God allowed her to be adopted into an American family where some of the best medical care in the world is within driving distance and surrounded her with many, many loving, caring family members and friends.

Latest Journal Update

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Juliana had an exam and blood counts at the hospital on April 8th and all of her counts were good (almost normal even). Today she saw her eye surgeon and her vision is still unchanged, but her right eyelid has fallen further. Dr. Hirschbein wants to do more surgery to try to lift it again, but I told Juliana it would be her decision whether or not to do another surgery (she can control so little of what is happening to her and this is an elective surgery). If she does decide to have the surgery it won't be until fall because she wants to be able to play in the sun and go swimming this summer.

Julie is feeling really good--she has been enjoying the warmer weather, riding her bike, building a "hang-out" in the woods and taking Maddie for walks. She continues to take daily oral chemotherapy and get mistletoe shots three days/week. Julie's next oncology appointment is next Wednesday, April 29th for an exam, counts and a port flush.
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Comments

5 Comments

Bonnie Ermilio
By Bonnie Ermilio
I think it's really great that you let Juliana make the decisions about her surgeries. It shows how so very much you care about her and her feelings.
It's so great to hear that she's enjoying summer and doing all those things, especially the "hang-out" she's making.
I'm praying that her exam on April 29th goes well!!
I'm sending LOTS of hugs and prayers to Juliana!!!!!
Monica Rapalo
By Monica
So glad you are doing so well!😊 You are a very sweet girl and you are beautiful. I'm truly so happy for you.
Jeri Garringer
By Jeri Garringer
We are so glad to hear this positive report. You are beautiful as ever Juliana! God bless.
Amanda Gilliams
By Amanda Gilliams
It is wonderful that Juliana is feeling so well! Prayers continuing for your cherished daughter...