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March 10, 2010 > Letter to the editor: Mariah needs your help

Letter to the editor: Mariah needs your help

Our lives changed on Thursday, December 18, 2008. We had just got home from doing some Christmas shopping and taking a picture with Santa. I was making dinner when my father-in-law was holding Mariah and she inched away from him in pain. She didn't want his hands by her side. We took a look at her stomach and noticed a large mass.

Kaiser-Santa Clara told me that it was Wilm's Tumor- a cancer of the kidneys. They also told me a kidney and a half was consumed by tumor and that it had already spread to her lungs; she needed surgery and chemotherapy.

We met Dr. Wong, Mariah's oncologist who told us Mariah was diagnosed at Stage 4/5. A Broviac catheter would be inserted into the main vein of Mariah's heart followed by chemotherapy. Mariah also needed radiation treatments. Routine doctor visits often do not detect this growth which starts in the kidneys and grows outwards until it pushes out through your belly.

Mariah responded well and was considered in remission and done with treatment in September 2009. She even had her Broviac taken out and took part in activities such as swimming!

November 24, 2009 would be another horrible day in this nightmare. Mariah had a stomach ache all day. After dinner she began to vomit and I was concerned about dehydration as she only had a little bit of kidney remaining. Mariah's cancer has relapsed.

Doctors placed another Broviac in her chest, started chemotherapy the same day. We are waiting to see if more surgery is necessary. Mariah's stem cells were extracted and stored for a transplant that will be needed down the road. Tumors are no longer in her kidneys, have appeared in a vein, her liver and I believe her lungs.

Any donation is greatly appreciated and would be put to good use. Your help could ease the stress/pain of this situation and help us to focus more on Mariah and her care, our two sons.

We thank everyone for their continued support. Your love, prayers, and support are very much appreciated and wanted at this point in our lives! Mariah would love to hear some encouraging thoughts and receive notes from friends and family. She is really sad right now and I think could use some positive energy!

Feel free to email me with any ideas for fundraisers at:

Jessica Erickson
Castro Valley

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