powering cures, realizing futures

Andi Kay Boroff

Andi smilingAndi was diagnosed with stage 3 Neuroblastoma at just 15 months old. Her mass was the size of an adult fist and it surrounded two two major blood vessels in her stomach. From there, all sorts of tests ensued. The first bit of good news came when they said it was not touching her spine nor was it evading any other major organ.

The next morning Andi was scheduled for surgery to do a biopsy, test her bone marrow, as well as put in the permanent IV that would be later used for chemo. The biopsy showed the tumor was intermediate to high risk. After consulting with multiple physicians, who had varying opinions on how to best proceed – ranging from surgery to chemo to doing nothing at all – it was determined that the best course was to observe Andi’s tumor. Experts classified it as favorable – meaning likely to shrink on its own – and fortunately, the wisdom of the experts prevailed.

Andi’s tumor has shrunk on its own by almost 60%. Her multiple scans have all come back clean, and she now just does scans once a year. Her tumor is still malignant, but should eventually turn into ganglioneuroma, which is a benign tumor. She participates in a study at Children’s Hospital of Los Angeles and because her tumor has reacted so well to no treatment, is the focal point of the study. Seven years later, Andi is a healthy and happy eight-year-old. Her experience proves the importance of perseverance, asking questions and letting science and the scientists speak. Twenty years ago, she would have received radiation right away, then chemo, then surgery – all of which we now know her type of tumor would not have responded to.

Have a story of your own? Your experiences propel us on and are the reason why our commitment to power cures and realize futures is unwavering.

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