• Cancer

    In the Loop: First at Mayo to survive this rare, aggressive brain cancer

brain cancer pediatric patient Addyson Cordes in a swing

Addyson Cordes is a fighter. Diagnosed at 13 months old with a "rare and aggressive" brain tumor (atypical teratoid rhabdoid), Allyson was put through an equally aggressive treatment plan that included neurosurgery,chemotherapy, and proton beam therapy — all before her third birthday. And today, as KAAL-TV reports,"among the handful of kids treated with this kind of cancer at Mayo Clinic," Addyson, now age 5, is "the first to survive."

"She's in remission," Addyson's doctor, Amulya Nageswara Rao, M.B.B.S., director of Mayo's Pediatric Brain Tumor Clinic, tells the station. "She's three years out … and all her scans are very clean and she's doing very well."

A recent feature story in Mayo Clinic Alumni magazine details just how far away that kind of outcome seemed when Addyson's parents, Michele Zidlicky and Nathan Cordes, first received her diagnosis. "When Addy was diagnosed, we faced having only a few months left with her," Michele tells the magazine. "Dr. Rao told us it wasn't an easily treatable cancer, and it had already spread to the spinal fluid and spinal cord. She said it was the fourth [atypical teratoid rhabdoid] case Mayo had seen, and the other children hadn't survived." Read the rest of Addyson's story.

This story originally appeared on the In the Loop blog.

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