Osteosarcoma survivor: Life after cancer can be amazing

Although it's been 18 years, I still clearly remember how scared my family was when I was diagnosed with osteosarcoma in my right femur at age 18. Looking back, I believe my youth and lack of understanding surrounding cancer kept my own anxiety in check. I’d noticed the bump above my knee but didn’t think much of it at the time. A family friend, who happened to be an orthopaedic surgeon, urged me to get an X-ray. After examining the images, he told my parents to make me an appointment at MD Anderson. He suspected that I had cancer and wanted me to receive the best treatment available. Not only was I young and supposed to have my whole life ahead of me; I was also in my second trimester of pregnancy with my second child. Starting osteosarcoma treatment while pregnant Expecting a baby added a layer of complication to my treatment. I discussed several options with my care team, led by Dr. Robert Benjamin. I decided to wait until my third trimester to begin chemotherapy in order to give my daughter as much time as possible to grow and develop. Thankfully, the waiting period was only a few weeks. I was scheduled to begin chemotherapy treatment on Sept. 11, 2001. Given the uncertainty and fear that surrounded the country that morning, my treatment was postponed briefly. I did three rounds of the chemotherapy drugs Adriamycin and Cisplatin, then delivered my daughter six weeks early in November 2001. She was perfect and had a full head of hair, which surprised my doctors. Since she was born early, she stayed...