13 Pavements

Friday, September 7, 2012

And Now For a Public Service Announcement

Did you know September is Childhood Cancer Awareness Month?  Did you know that it will be one year this month that Liv was diagnosed with cancer?  Doesn't that seem horribly ironic?  I know.

Well.  I feel the need to say something, even here on this little blog. And I only know a little bit.  So here is the little bit I know.

Retinoblastoma accounts for approximately 3% of all childhood cancer with 90% of those cases being diagnosed before the age of 5.  While retinoblastoma is serious and can be deadly, with early detection a child's life can be saved.

So how do you know what to look for with this kind of cancer?  In something like 80% cases, a "glow" was noticed in a picture taken by a parent.  Imagine the eyes of a cat in a photograph, that is the kind of white glow you will see in the eye or eyes of a child with retinoblastoma.  Visit www.knowtheglow.org to see exactly what this looks like and more information.

If you see or suspect a glow, see your child's pediatrician immediately.  Doctor's can easily check the eyes, ask them to check for the red reflex.  This is something that can and should be done at well-child visits but rarely is.  Ask for it.  You can further request that your child's eyes be dilated and examined.  If your doctor refuses, see someone else.

So, so, so many people don't know about this.  Spread the word.  Check your babies.  Know the glow.

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