We were refered to and saw the radiologist Dr. Garlitos on May 11th. We asked him questions as to the dangers and side effects of the treatments. He told us she would receive 21 units over 3 weeks and that this was a much lower dose than used in the past of 35 units on adults. But Katie is a small child with little body mass and proportionately that is a much higher dose than an adult.
The Dangers of Radiation Treatment
Radiation would be done to Katie's chest. She is 12 yrs old and hasn't developed sexually and is not physically mature yet. The radiation would damage her lungs (cystic fribrosis), her heart muscle would be damaged, her breasts would be damaged and would likely develop breast cancer later, and her spinal column in her back would be damaged and she would not grow any taller and may have learning problems. Her thyroid and thymos glands would be damaged and she would have hormone problems. Immediate side effects are nausea and vomiting, low blood counts, mouth sores, and skin burns.