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Meet Hannah, Age 9
Hannah was a carefree kindergartener when a routine trip to the nurse’s office turned into a larger ordeal. “She had bumped into the corner of a desk and was complaining about severe pain in her side,” Hannah’s mom Michele says. “When I took her home, she ended up throwing up. The pediatrician sent us to the Emergency Room to rule out appendicitis.”
It was at University of Maryland Upper Chesapeake Health’s Pediatric Emergency Room where several diagnostic tests revealed Hannah had a Wilms Tumor growing on one of her kidneys.
“They told us the University of Maryland’s Children’s Hospital was best equipped to take care of this rare cancerous tumor,” Michele says.
It was there where the family met Ashley Munchel, MD and later Regina Macatangay, MD. Drs. Munchel and Macatangay and the Pediatric Hematology/Oncology team developed an action plan specific to Hannah’s case and needs.
They team removed the tumor and affected kidney, and Hannah had chemotherapy and radiation therapy with Dr. Young Kwok at the University of Maryland Marlene and Stewart Greenebaum Comprehensive Cancer Center to remove any remaining cancer.
“While it’s true that Wilms tumor is a very rare condition, we are a regional referral center that receives patients from as far away as West Virginia and Delaware,” Dr. Macatangay says. “This means we are accustomed to receiving and successfully treating rare disorders other groups aren’t equipped to treat.”
Hannah, who grew up on a farm in Harford County, now wants to become a veterinarian when she grows up.