Gracelyn was diagnosed with retinoblastoma on August 10, 2011. She was sent to a retina specialist that day and then was sent to an oncologist in San Francisco the following day. She had 2 tumors on her retina that were large enough to be seen when looking in her pupil. On August 26, 2011, she had one dose of chemotherapy injected directly into her eye through the ocular artery. As a result of the chemotherapy, Gracelyn developed a cataract in that eye. Her parents made the difficult decision to have her eye removed (enucleated) to hopefully remove all of the cancer. This surgery was done October 28, 2011. Gracelyn was so brave throughout all of this. She had numerous ultrasounds done under anesthesia to check for further development. All of her eye ultrasounds were great. Gracelyn is considered cancer-free; however, doctors do not know what her chances of developing other cancers (bone, skin, lung, lymphoma, etc.) are because her case is rare. The genetic mutation that caused Gracelyn’s retinoblastoma was not within the Rb1 gene where a this cancer comes from. Her mutation was on the outside of that gene. For now, we enjoy life with Gracelyn and do our best to prevent what we can by applying sunscreen and staying away from cigarette smoke.

Every child who has been diagnosed with childhood cancer inspires us to Rally On to find better treatments with fewer long-term side effects and, ultimately, cures. Please join us in the fight against childhood cancer by making a donation or setting up your own Rally fundraiser today.

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