Childhood Cancer Name: Rhabdo-Myo-Sarcoma
Childhood Cancer Localisation: Soft tissue
Childhood Cancer Noticeable Symptoms: lumps
Childhood Cancer Diagnostic method: MRI scan, PET/CT scan, Biopsy analysis
Childhood Cancer Treatment: Chemotherapy, Radiation, Surgery

Rhabdomyosarcoma in a nutshell

Rhabdomyosarcoma (RMS) is classified according to the histology of the cells (how they look under a microscope).
There are 4 different types of RMS; The most common one is called Embryonal and the most dangerous one is called Alveolar.
The 4 types are:

    1. Embryonal: The most common type, usually found in children under 15 years of age and in the head and neck region and genitourinary tract.
    2. Botryoid: A variant of the embryonal type; the tumor arises as a grape-like lesion in mucosal-lined hollow organs such as the vagina and urinary bladder.
    3. Alveolar: A more aggressive tumor that usually involves the muscles of the extremities or trunk, more common in adolescents.
    4. Pleomorphic: Rarely seen in children; arises in muscles of the extremities.

If your child was diagnosed with RMS, here is a  list of questions you should ask your doctor. Additional relevant links can be found below.

Cancer advise from parents of children with cancer;

  1. At Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in NY, Dr. Leonard Wexler is conducting a relatively successful clinical trial with high-dose chemotherapy. It is probably the best place to be if your child has RMS.
  2. The radiation treatment is super important as the RMS reacts well to radiation. Therefore, make sure this part of the treatment is being done in the most professional way; You may want to consider traveling to a facility which specializes in Radiation therapy in children.
  3. Alveolar RMS (ARMS) is a very aggressive and very violent type of cancer with the tendency to relapse. That’s why is crucial to defeating cancer on the first try. Do the best you can and be proactive early!
  4. ALWAYS get a second opinion on the biopsy and suggested treatment. Sarcomas can be hard to diagnose. Remember: Any good Oncologist would welcome second and third opinions

See also parent’s Video Testimonials about this disease.

External links

American Childhood Cancer Organization (ACCO) – RhabdoMyoSarcoma: Visit the American Cancer Society to learn more about diagnosis, pre, during and post-treatment issues and some valuable tips.
American Cancer Society
Rhabdomyosarcoma acebook page