Children are supposed to be carefree, lighthearted and untroubled with problems that they shouldn’t have to deal with. There problems should consist of stuff like finding the perfect spot for playing hide and seek or the occasional math homework.
Chrissy Turner, however, is burdened by something that’s way beyond her years. At 8 years old, she is one of the youngest individuals to be diagnosed with breast cancer.
Around October, Chrissy told her parents, Troy and Annette Turner, about a lump she found on her chest, according to The Guardian. The lump turned out to be secretory carcinoma, a rare form of breast cancer that’s usually found in older women.
Chrissy Turner lying in a hospital bed waiting for treatment (Facebook /Chrissy's Alliance)
The Turner family, from the U.S., is not unfamiliar with cancer. Annette suffered from cervical cancer and Troy is currently battling Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma which he was diagnosed with when Chrissy was a baby.
“It's a struggle every day worrying about my family, about my husband and now my baby girl,” Annette told ABC4 Utah News.
Chrissy will undergo a mastectomy this December to remove her breast tissue. According to her doctor, Brian Bucher, carcinoma diagnosis accounts for only 0.15% of breast cancers. Fortunately, it is “very treatable,” he told The Guardian.
Annette’s best friend, Melissa Papaj, has started a GoFundMe page to help with medical expenses. A Facebook page has also been setup for those who want to follow Annette’s progress in fighting the disease.
Despite her burden, the young girl remains strong. “I was scared the first time that I knew about it,” Chrissy told ABC4 Utah News. “But I knew that I could fight it off and I hope that I can fight it off.”
The Philippines is not foreign to breast cancer. Many Filipinas have battled, and are currently battling, against the disease. Here are some numbers about the Philippines and its relationship with breast cancer. Written in an article on Smart Parenting:
“According to a 2013 GMA News report, the Philippines “has the highest incidence of breast cancer” in Asia, with an “estimated 3 out of 100 Filipino women” contracting the disease before age 75. In 2012, the Philippine Society of Medical Oncology also reported that “1 out of every 100” Filipinas will die of breast cancer before they turn 75.”
Sources: Nov. 24, 2015. "Eight-year-old Utah girl diagnosed with rare form of breast cancer". theguardian.com Nov. 24, 2015. "8-Year-Old Utah Girl Diagnosed With Rare Breast Cancer". time.com