The family of a young boy with a rare and aggressive form of cancer say their world has been flipped upside down following the two-year-old's sudden diagnosis.
Louie Bell, an energetic and kind-hearted toddler, faces a battle to fight Embryonal Rhabdomyosarcoma - a cancerous tumour that originates in the soft tissues of the body.
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Louie's health quickly took a turn after celebrating his sister's fourth birthday on Sunday, April 28th, suffering severe abdominal pain the next day. By Friday biopsies and MRIs revealed a cancer diagnosis.
"It all happened just so fast," his aunt Jessica Farrow said
Doctors discovered the adorable toddler has a large tumour located around his bladder and prostate which is pushing into his spine.
His mum Maxine says the find has been "horrendous" and is committed to helping her son in any way she can.
"It's strange how quickly you just get on with it and do what you can," she told Newshub.
Louie is receiving care at Starship Hospital with the support of Maxine, dad Matt and four-year-old sister Molly. The family is also seeking treatment options that are only available in the States.
Based on the location of Louie's cancer, proton radiation therapy - a type of radiation therapy that uses high-energy beams to treat a tumour - could be the best treatment.
Proton radiation therapy lowers the long-term effects which could impact Louie growing up. It is not yet known if he is a suitable candidate for this.
His parents are hopeful as with radiation therapy alone, Louie faces incontinence, infertility and impotence, and has risks other cancers developing in the future.
He is being administered chemotherapy weekly which will continue for at least a year, as well as radiation therapy at Starship Hospital.
Despite the hard times ahead, Maxine says the family is grateful for the efforts of the medical staff who were quick to identify Louie's illness.
Ms Farrow says that despite the hardship the family are facing, the family of four's strength and love has never shone as bright.
By raising funds for the Bell family the family hopes to be able to take the pressure off them as a household and to hopefully put money toward the proton therapy should he qualify.
A GiveALittle has been set up to help the family with medical costs and proton therapy should he qualify to receive the treatment in America.