Four-year-old Katie Dodd from the UK is fighting cancer in the US, where she is getting life saving proton therapy treatment.
Last August, Katie started to have severe back pain. In September, she woke up and realized she could not move her legs anymore. She was taken to the hospital, where an MRI scan revealed she had a 6-centimeter tumor on her spine.
Doctors established she needed pioneering proton beam therapy in America (this kind of treatment is not yet available in the UK). The little girl fortunately qualified for NHS funding, which took care of the £114.000 cost of her treatment.
She is being treated at Wolfson Children’s Hospital in Jacksonville, Florida. Her parents say their daughter remains “unfazed” by her treatment and is working harder than ever at her physiotherapy with her dad. She has even started to crawl.
He mother says : “Her crawling is only a few steps and the weight of her body is carried by her arms so it is very tiring for her. Her legs don’t have the strength to carry her body yet as her muscles have wasted since September 2012. Hopefully with more practise and her confidence building, this is another step in the right direction.”
Katie is now regularly talking about “when her legs are better”. She has impressed her doctors with her calmness in the sessions and has not needed any anaesthetic to prevent her from moving, which is very rare for a child her age.