At only four months old, Molly Hughes was diagnosed with stage 4 cancer. The doctors discovered the disease after it had spread to almost every part of her body. From the diagnosis followed 15 months of grueling treatment involving chemotherapy, stem cell transplants and several rounds of radiation.
Diagnosed with Stage 4 Neuroblastoma Cancer
Molly was diagnosed with Neuroblastoma, which according to Mayo Clinic is a type of cancer that manifests from immature nerve cells found in various parts of the body (particularly around the adrenal glands which sit atop the kidneys).
The cancerous cells can also develop around the abdomen area, chest, neck and spine. Neuroblastoma is common in children 5 years old or younger although in some cases that are more rare, it can affect kids slightly older.
A journey of over 130 nights in the hospital
As for Molly, her family recounts spending nearly 130 nights in the hospital while she underwent a series of cancer treatments. Molly's mother Chelsea Hughes stated "we're just thankful that she made it through all that treatment. It was tough. She got really, really sick. The treatments are just so harsh on [children's] bodies." One of the five rounds of chemotherapy Molly underwent caused hearing loss and now she has to put on hearing aids as a consequence.
Phew! A sigh of Relief
Several treatments later, Molly's test results revealed her cancer had vanished. In an interview with CNN, her mother said that the family was so relieved that Molly had beat the odds and that she was now free of cancer. She says that Molly is cheerful and doing all the normal toddler stuff she missed out on while undergoing treatment.
However, doctors are warning that cancer has a history of relapsing and that Molly should be monitored every three months for the next five years as a consequence. The toddler is currently on a new trial drug to prevent the disease from relapsing.
To celebrate Molly’s triumph over stage 4 cancer, the family is taking her swimming. Molly’s mother said that this would be the first time Molly gets to swim considering she had an IV in her chest before that made even bathing extremely difficult. As relieved as the mother is, she is still convinced that her child needs prayer until she is completely clear of any further cancer risk.