Sam and Carrie Kilgore recently took their 17-year-old daughter, Samantha to the doctor for right knee pain that was increasing in severity. The unexpected (and stunning) diagnosis: Osteosarcoma, high-grade. This is a rare bone cancer requiring chemotherapy and surgery to remove the lesion, which is shown to be 9.3 cm (3.5"). The surgeon is hopeful that complex knee reconstruction will be an option. Further surgery details are unknown at this point. Updates to follow.
Samantha began chemotherapy on January 25. Sam and Carrie are spending their days and nights with Samantha at Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore, which is a three-hour drive from their home. The chemo drugs used will require many, many trips and hospital stays at JHH. Six rounds of chemo are expected, and each round takes five weeks. For three of those weeks, Samantha will spend 3-4 days in the hospital to get chemo and IV fluids.
Of course, Samantha's health and well-being are first and foremost. As you can imagine, costs will incur. In addition to medical, there are many expenses related to the trips to Baltimore over the next year.
Samantha is the oldest of Sam and Carrie's four children, including Samuel (14), Logan (9), and Lily (5). Sam became a stay-at-home dad three years ago so that Carrie could go back to school. She graduated as a registered nurse in May. From Carrie - "Samantha's getting her first dose of chemotherapy exactly two weeks after the first phone call telling us that her knee pain was because of a tumor. As a mom, I'm thankful the doctors have acted so quickly. As a nurse, I'm scared by their urgency."
Sam is doing some home repairs and making it wheelchair-friendly. Samantha cannot use her right leg because the tumor could cause the bone to break. Samantha is in her last semester of high school, preparing to start college and room with friends. Now she is fighting to be independent in the smallest of tasks. Her spirits are high and she still has her sense of humor.
Everyone's thoughts, prayers, and support reinforce that this family is not in this alone. Thank you.