Becca's Mom Speaks Out
Becca Solodon is a beautiful seventeen year old girl who enjoyed volleyball, jogging, surfing, boogie boarding, and many other activities until her left foot began to ache. Becca was fifteen when her foot began to hurt, at which point we pursued doctor's care.
Her primary care doctor took an x-ray of her foot that confirmed no broken bones. She then was referred to a physical therapist for approximately six months. Therapy did not seem to help and the pain continued to increase.
Becca was then referred to a foot specialist who recommended orthodics. After wearing the orthodics the pain only worsened. Further x-rays were taken showing nothing. We requested an MRI. The MRI showed a small soft tissue mass the size of a marble in her left foot and a referral was made to UCLA for further treatment. We were assured not to worry.
Things looked promising as a biopsy was scheduled to remove the tumor. Shortly after the biopsy we received the phone call that forever changed our lives. The tumor was malignant. It was a rare form of cancer called soft tissue synovial sarcoma and was very aggressive. If left untreated, it was fatal. If treated locally, it had a ninety percent reoccurrence rate and would eventually travel to the lung at which point it would most likely be too advanced to treat. The only way to save Becca's life was to have extensive chemotherapy and amputate below the knee! We were devastated! How would we tell our beautiful, otherwise healthy, daughter the diagnosis?
The value of faith, family, and friends is immeasurable during a crisis time such as this. People rallied together to help carry us through this incredibly difficult time. The pediatric staff and volunteers at Cottage Hospital were so kind and compassionate. Becca underwent seven days of chemotherapy for twenty-two hours a day with a two week break in between, for two cycles. She then had a forty-eight hour cycle before her amputation. Becca's Mom needed to stay with her during these extended hospital stays. She therefore took a one year unpaid leave of absence from her job to provide care and rehabilitation for Becca. Many additional expenses accrued during this time as medical needs arose.
The Teddy Bear Cancer Foundation is aware of these and other needs of families who are struggling through similar situations with their children. The support and financial assistance the Teddy Bear Cancer Foundation offers serves to encourage these families and remind them that they are not alone. What a comfort to know that others care enough to get involved!
Becca is finished with her cancer treatments and will need regular CAT scans for the next five years. She is beginning her journey of being fitted with a prosthetic leg. We anticipate a wonderful, cancer free life for our daughter!