Friday, September 16, 2005

Counts rising slowly

I have finally created a viewable Photo album for Dylan, visit Dylan’s Updated Photo Gallery Dylan is doing well, the runny nose has settled a bit so hopefully it will not turn into anything. His ANC (Neutrophil) counts are 0.3 today, so we are waiting for them to rise and continue GCSF injections. The Amikacin antibiotics were stopped yesterday, so Dylan remains only on Vancomycin until Sunday. Dylan will likely need a platelet transfusion tomorrow as today’s level was just 16. I think Dylan will turn into an orange Tic-Tac soon, he is eating at least 2 packets a day! The Vegemite sandwiches have taken a back seat to a noodle dish that he likes to eat from a deli nearby to the hospital, but he still wants ribs every night for dinner. Today Dylan was talking about the garden at home and he said he wants to help daddy to fix it up. I told Dylan that one day we will return to Australia and that he can do the garden then. Dylan responded with “Well we have to get lots of people praying for me, so I can get better” It astounds me at how spiritual Dylan has become. As I have said before, I am not a religious person myself, so Dylan has not been taught about religion by me. He just seems to know this stuff and in turn has taught me, and given me the knowledge to believe.
I contacted the Victoria Cancer Council the other day because I was curious as to the statistics of Neuroblastoma in our state. I am always searching for a reason why, as all parents do, and we never find one. I know that in Dylan’s school there is more than one child with cancer, and it just seems that pediatric cancer is becoming more common. When I think about when I was at school, I didn’t know anyone with cancer! I thought about living in a newly developed area, where the houses are sprayed for white ants prior to being built. Anyway, this is what the response from the Cancer Council was, you may find this interesting:

Since 1982 there have been 163 Victorian children under 15 years diagnosed with Neuroblastoma of who 91 were boys and 72 girls. This cancer is most common in very young children with 145 of the diagnoses being in children under 5 years. Though there is some fluctuation in numbers between years there is no obvious increase or decrease in the incidence of these cancers with an average of 7-8 new diagnoses every year in Victoria. It is very hard to determine if incidence differs between areas because the numbers are very small - however, no Victorian council has had more than 2 children under 15 diagnosed with Neuroblastoma in the past 5 years. Altogether about 45-50 cancers a year are diagnosed in children between 5-14 years. The number of children diagnosed with cancer does tend to be higher in newly developed areas because these areas usually have more younger residents with children and therefore a greater population at risk.

Thank you to everyone for continuing to sign Dylan's guest book, your entries we read everyday and inspire us to keep up the fight.