The power of prayer, a bracelet and football is helping one family fight a deadly disease. Cameron Weddle was diagnosed with Leukemia at the age of three. Since then Cameron has received treatment daily both here at University Medical Center and at home.
Just shy of five-years-old and already Cameron Weddle has his name on a Red Raider game day locker and on the Jumbo-Tron at Jones AT&T Stadium. On this day, Cameron and his big brother Bryce are guests of the Texas Tech Football Team, learning how to pass like quarterback Graham Harrell and score touchdowns like wide receiver Michael Crabtree.
"Just to see Bryce getting to be a little boy and Cameron. For four hours we didn't think about having cancer," Misty Weddle, Cameron's mom said.
Nearly a year ago, the football loving 4-year-old, woke up unable to walk. Cameron's mother Misty says doctors originally thought he had a bone infection. However, testing revealed a more formidable opponent.
"The doctor called," Misty said. "He said I think your son has Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia. I got off the phone and feel to my knees and just said God give it to me because I can't image what his life is going to be like," Misty said.
Cameron was diagnosed a type of blood cancer which doctors say is the most common and treatable Leukemia in children under the age of 15. Cameron is now a regular at University Medical Center's Southwest Cancer Treatment and Research Center.
"She's coming," Cameron said. NewsChannel 11 asked who was coming and Cameron replied, "Miss Heather."
Each week Cameron and his mom Misty come to the Southwest Cancer Center for treatment. Pediatric Oncology Nurse Heather Donaghey is one of the first people Cameron sees.
"Did you have a good weekend?" Heather asked.
On this visit, Cameron is getting his blood levels checked. Donaghey draws blood through a port, which is connected to Cameron's heart.
"He had a little fever he was coughing a lot, he had a little infection so we went into the hospital and got some antibiotics, Donaghey said.
Due to the infection, Cameron's Cancer Chemotherapy was put on hold. However, on this day it looks like the antibiotics are working.
"Very good blood count and we'll probably be able to restart the chemotherapy," Donaghey added.
"The difference between failure and success is doing something almost right verses doing something exactly right. Sometimes mean monkeying around with the doses of chemotherapy," Pediatric Hematologist and Oncologist Anthony Cecalupo said.
Dr. Cecalupo is treating Cameron by prescribing daily doses of chemotherapy at home.
"Half a teaspoon, five days a week and three quarters of a teaspoon three days a week," Dr. Cecalupo told Misty.
That brings the fight against cancer from the hospital to the Weddle home.
"Ok that's three down the hatch good job," Misty said.
For Cameron, some of his best doctors and nurses are right here at home, mom Misty, dad Keith, big brother Bryce and little sister Meredith. However, luckily Cameron does not have to travel far from his playmates and roommate for treatment.
"If it weren't for Children's Miracle Network and the hospital Cameron and I would be in a hotel room or apartment in Dallas or Houston," Misty added.
We asked Cameron which of the bunks was his bed. "Cameron's is on the bottom, mine is on the top," Bryce said.
In that bunk bed, Cameron is able to dream of miracles like fighting cancer and one day playing for the fighting Red Raiders, thanks to the Children's Miracle Network Hospital right here in Lubbock.
"When we walked through that door, and we met doctor Cecalupo and the staff I felt at ease. I felt like this doctor is going to take care of my child. That this hospital is going to do everything that it can to make this little boy's life the best that it can be," Misty said.
Cameron's disease will need daily treatment for the next two and a half years. However, the good news is Doctor Cecalupo says so far Cameron's prognosis is positive.
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