Friday, December 26, 2014

Archive: July, 2012

POSTED: Monday, July 2, 2012, 3:35 PM
Rachel hits the links

Since I last had a blog update, many things have happened. I went to Children's Hospital of Phiadelphia (CHOP) for a check-up with Dr. Dormans, had my last day of 7th grade, started summer swimming and golf lessons, and went to Puerto Rico for the first time.

Later on this summer I'm going to a camp at one of my counties vocational high schools - The Marine Academy of Science and Technology (M.A.S.T.) - and I'm going to the Ronald McDonald camp in the Poconos. I couldn’t go to camp last year because I had just gotten my brace off after surgery, and I was learning to walk with my new endo-prosthesis.

On May 14th, I went to CHOP for a Check-up with Dr. Dormans. He wanted me to get a scanogram to check that my legs were both growing at the same rate. If the leg that I had my surgery on stopped growing, Dr. Dormans would have to go in to my left leg and break the growth plate so that my legs would be as close to the same length as possible. This is something you have to keep an eye on when you have the kind of limb salvage surgery that I had.

Rachel Kovach @ 3:35 PM  Permalink |
About this blog
Rachel Kovach, 12, is a seventh-grader at Mother Theresa Regional School in Atlantic Highlands, N.J. She lives in Highlands, N.J., near the Sandy Hook national seashore, with her parents, Mari and Kurt Kovach.

Since first grade, Rachel has been swimming with the Monmouth Barracudas, a year-round competitive United States Swimming Club program. She hopes to continue competitive swimming after her cancer treatment; if not, she envisions coaching someday or maybe a career in medicine. Figure skating and jazz dancing have been big parts of her life. One of the things she hates about being in the hospital is missing her dog Cocoa and her many friends.

Rachel's doctors

These are the key physicians overseeing Rachel’s care at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia:

Naomi BalamuthNaomi Balamuth, pediatric oncologist, specializes in treating pediatric sarcomas, a subset of solid tumors.



Richard B. WomerRichard B. Womer, pediatric oncologist, led studies of the latest chemotherapy treatment protocol for Ewing’s sarcoma.



John P. DormansJohn P. Dormans, M.D., chief of orthopaedic surgery, is an international expert in the surgical treatment of musculoskeletal tumors.


Timeline of Rachel Kovach’s Treatment

Dec. 3, 2010: Pain in Rachel's right knee is initially diagnosed as tendinitis.

Jan. 20: An MRI reveals a tumor in right leg.

Jan 24: Rachel sees John Dormans, chief of orthopedic surgery at Children's Hospital of Philadelphia.

Jan. 27: A biopsy confirms Ewing's sarcoma.

February to mid-April: Regimens of chemotherapy alternate every other week. The three-drug regimen is given over two days; the two-drug regimen is given over five days.

May 3: Surgery replaces most of the right femur with a prosthesis.

May 5: A Children's Hospital team will help Rachel get out of bed.

May 10 to September: Alternating regimens of chemotherapy are to resume.

Around May 10: Physical therapy will begin in the hospital and continue for at least several months after Rachel goes home.

Onco Girl
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