You know you are desperate when a doctor tells you your child has an extremely rare immune system condition of unknown origin that punches Swiss-cheese-like holes in the bones and especially the skull, fatal in about 15% of the cases and usually treated through experimental drug protocols, and you feel relieved.
|Periwinkle: Our little miracle|
His initial treatment included small doses of vinblastine, a drug derived from the caustic sap of the rosy periwinkle, Catharanthus roseus (or Vinca rosea), native to Madagascar. In a matter of days, the olive-sized lump looked more like a caper, and within six weeks the tumor was no longer visible to the eye. The treatment regime continued for another two years with a cocktail of drugs similar to those used for leukemia but in far smaller doses.
I am very relieved to say that he is now fully recovered and suffered no side-effects from more than two years of low-dose chemotherapy. Miracles really do happen.