A family have released the heartbreaking photograph of their toddler undergoing cancer treatment to highlight the reality of childhood cancer.
Sophia Soto, now six, from America, was diagnosed with stage 4 neuroblastoma an aggressive and rare cancer at just 14 months old after tumours were discovered behind her eyes and on her kidney.
The heartwrenching photograph is of Sophia having a lead put on her chest as part of her cancer treatment.
But luckily little Sophia has been in remission for five years and now looks like a completely different child compared to the one in the heart wrenching photograph.
The picture of Sophia upset really does home in on the reality of childhood cancer, her mum Rosie Soto, 40, said.
She was having a lead put on her chest for her treatment which she didnt want hence why Sophia was so upset.
I look back at the picture now and wonder how I did it; it was so hard watching my little girl so ill.
Rosie became concerned about Sophia after she began developing bruising around her eyes something she claims doctors repeatedly dismissed as being from a bump or fall.
It wasnt until Rosie took Sophia to see an eye specialist that she got some answers.
Sophia kept getting bruising on her eyes and I didnt recall her falling over or anything, so I didnt understand where they were come from, Rosie said.
I kept taking her to the doctors because the bruising wasnt going away, but they just said it must have been from a bump or something.
Sophia wasnt referred for a scan or biopsy until I went to see an eye specialist with her who knew straight away that it was caused by a tumour.
She was sent for an MRI where black spots appeared on the scans confirming the tumours behind her eyes.
It was then the biopsy which found the tumours on one of her kidneys as well which led to her stage 4 neuroblastoma diagnosis.
After being diagnosed in March 2014, the then 14-month-old endured 60 rounds of chemotherapy, 20 rounds of radiation and a stem cell transplant over a six months period.
Following her treatment, Sophia has been in remission since November 2014 and has been medication free for two years.
Sophia isnt yet classified as cancer free so has check ups every six months with specialists.
She still has tumours behind her eyes which cannot be removed due to the placement of them, but doctors believe the tumours are benign and therefore not causing her too much harm.
Doctors are reluctant to remove the tumours Sophia currently has behind her eyes as theyve said it would be likely the surgery to disfigure her face, Rosie said.
Whilst they are tumours, doctors are reasonably confident that they are not cancerous so we have decided to not have the surgery right now, but it may be something she has when shes older.
Sophia now looks happy and healthy. She loves to dance and hopes to become a vet one day.
No one can imagine what she went through looking at her now she just looks like a normal regular child, Rosie said.
Sophia has her moments when she asks about when she was sick and has questions about her treatment scars, but over all shes a pretty happy girl.
If I was to say anything to other parents with children battling cancer, Id say to them to not give up, stay positive and keep your faith.
Its really important not to compare your childs process to anyone else as everyone battles illnesses differently as every situation is different.
Were over the moon that Sophia is now doing so well were really blessed that shes such a fighter.
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