Newspaper for Crossmaglen, South Armagh, Newry and Down.

Ellen’s Journey begins Stateside

 The family of little Ellen Treanor from Bessbrook faces an anxious wait this week as the tot undergoes a series of tests in New York to determine her suitability for specialist cancer treatment.

Ellen made the trans-Atlantic journey yesterday (Sunday) with her parents Paddy and Clare, and will commence the tests on Wednesday. 

The family has been hoping for a swift transition to further treatment in New York following the news last week from her doctors in the Royal Belfast Hospital for Sick Children that recent scans show ‘no evidence of disease’.

Having been diagnosed with stage four high-risk neuroblastoma in January last year, the brave four-year-old has endured eighteen months of intensive treatment.  With the disease now in remission, now is the best time for Ellen to begin the intensive clinical trials in New York that will offer her the best chance of preventing its return.

Announcing the latest news of her treatment via the ‘Ellen’s Journey’ Facebook page, her parents thanked everyone for their support and the Solving Kids Cancer charity for its work in arranging Ellen’s trip to New York.

The post read: “The lovely team at Solving Kids Cancer have been extremely busy for the past few days organising Ellen’s trip to New York to begin her clinical trial. We are so grateful for the help the charity has given us, organising all of this alone would have been so overwhelming!

“We fly out of Dublin on Sunday morning and if all goes according to plan we will spend 24 days in New York.  Ellen has an appointment to meet with the doctor in charge of the trial on Tuesday morning and on Wednesday she will have a general anaesthetic to have a bone marrow biopsy carried out. This has to be done in New York as they drill 4 holes in Ellen’s pelvis to take samples of her bone marrow (to check for disease), whereas at home, only 2 drill holes are required. We hope this doesn’t make her feel much sorer than usual.  Then we will have an anxious wait for the results of her bone marrow, if they are all clear she will begin her vaccine trial the following week.”

Offering their deep appreciation to everyone who supported the fundraising campaign to take Ellen to America, the family added: “We would like to thank every single person who donated to Ellen’s campaign, without your help we simply would not have been able to give Ellen the opportunity to take part in this trial.  As her parents, it is so important to us that we know we have tried everything in our power to stop this horrible disease from returning.  We are forever indebted to you all.”