'Heartbreaking': Two-Year-Old Diagnosed With Ovarian Cancer
Several huge tumours have been discovered inside the body of a young girl, including one of 14 centimetres on her ovary.
McKenna 'Kenni' Shea Xydias was diagnosed with an ovarian yolk sac tumour after developing a high temperature and a bloated stomach.
When she first went to see the doctor in Senoia, in the U.S. state of Georgia, Kenni's paediatrician assumed she was suffering gas in her bowel.
But after undergoing an ultrasound, the doctor spotted a mass in her ovaries.
After running more tests, doctors ended up finding a number of tumours inside Kenni's tiny body -- some were in her abdomen, one was near her liver and one was on her right ovary.
That particular tumour was a staggering 14cm in length.
What Is An Ovarian Yolk Sac Tumour?
According to The Royal Children's Hospital Melbourne, Kenni's cancer is part of a group of tumours called 'germ cell tumours'.
"Germ cells are the cells that become an embryo, which develops into a child in the womb. Some of these cells remain in different parts of a child's body after birth and may produce tumours," an explanation on their website reads.
Childhood forms of ovarian cancer are incredibly rare -- with only five percent of cases like Kenni's.
Kenni's parents, Mike and Meagan Xydias, told 10 daily at first they didn't realise this could happen to such a young child.
"It was heartbreaking when we first found out," Mike said.
"I was in shock and Meagan was heartbroken. It was the last thing from our minds when we brought her in [to the doctor]."
Mike said after the diagnosis, Kenni was rushed into surgery. She ended up having her right ovary and part of her small intestines removed, because there was "such a large mass in her abdomen".
"They also biopsied several tumours in her abdomen and never gave us a final count of how many there were because there were "so many" -- but they did manage to get rid of 90 percent of them," he said.
Mike said her doctors are "confident the chemotherapy will get rid of the remaining tumours".
Mike said Kenni is "doing well" after finishing her first round of chemotherapy, and has only suffered some fatigue and nausea.
Despite her cancer being diagnosed as a stage 3, Mike said Kenni's prognosis is good -- "which is helping us get through", he said.
Friends of the family have been so moved by their plight, they've set up a GoFundMe page to help raise money for Kenni's treatment.
Mike said the support has been "so powerful and uplifting".
"We’ll continue to get through this by taking it one step at a time."
He urged parents to trust their instincts and to always seek medical advice.
"If you feel that something is not quite right with your child, be their advocate," he said.
"Ovarian cancer is called the 'silent killer' because the signs and symptoms can be explained by a number of other things," he said.
"Our saving grace was that we knew our daughter very well ... so when she put on four pounds in a month, we knew something wasn’t quite right."
"We trusted our instincts and questioned the doctors and asked for another test. Thankfully they found it when they did."
Featured image: Go Fund Me