"The oncology team managed to get our son's neuroblastoma into remission: we are truly grateful"
Maryan, diagnosed with grade-4 neuroblastoma when he was 18 months old, received chemotherapy, surgery, radiation therapy and immunotherapy at SJD Barcelona Children's Hospital.
Maryan arrived at SJD Barcelona Children's Hospital when he was almost 2 years old. In the summer of 2019, after a few days' holiday with his family, the child began to feel unwell, presenting discomfort and a temperature. His local hospital in the Ukraine detected a tumour with an abdominal ultrasound: it was a high-risk grade-4 neuroblastoma. After receiving the diagnosis, the family started to enquire about the treatment options available to their child. They did not take long to realise that the best solution was to go abroad to save their son's life, since Maryan would never receive the proper treatment in the Ukraine that would give him any chance of surviving.
A few days after getting the diagnosis, all the friends, relatives and acquaintances of the child and his family began to search for options in hospitals the world over: from Israel and Turkey to Spain, Germany, Poland or Belarus. They eventually chose SJD Barcelona Children's Hospital, which was recommended by their immediate environment and also by oncology specialists.
Induction therapy and immunotherapy, the optimal treatments for Maryan
Just one week after contacting the International Patients Department, the family landed in Barcelona, where the child was to be treated by the Oncology Department. From the outset, they give us a very clear explanation of the protocol that would be followed and why the treatment that our child was to be given was the right one. The child initially underwent several chemotherapy cycles to reduce the size of the tumour, followed by surgery to remove it in its entirety. He was then treated with radiation therapy and immunotherapy (naxitamab) in the consolidation process.
The treatment at the hospital lasted one year, and according to the child's mother, although it was tough, everything went well: The atmosphere in the hospital was always pleasant and the doctors were also very positive. Maryan coped with the process very well, even on the worst days, during the chemotherapy cycles, and even when he felt ill he would get up to dance and sing. I suppose that his strength of character helped him to overcome the disease.
The child entered remission in the spring of 2020 and was discharged with quarterly follow-ups to monitor his evolution, which continues to be favourable. "We are very satisfied with the care, as well as the medication given and the follow-up tests", said Yaroslava, Maryan's mother, who added "Whenever the child takes part in a clinical trial, the documentation is signed and a very clear explanation of what is involved is given. We knew what the procedures would be like at all times, as well as the drugs that our child would be taking. We are truly grateful".