Halle Krawczyk of Salmon Arm prepares to do a happy dance following the great news that after her three surgeries in January, there is no sign of cancer on her most recent scans. (Contributed)

Halle Krawczyk of Salmon Arm prepares to do a happy dance following the great news that after her three surgeries in January, there is no sign of cancer on her most recent scans. (Contributed)

Video: Ups and downs during Shuswap girl’s cancer surgeries lead to exhilaration

Twelve-year-old Halle Krawzcyk and family from Salmon Arm hear better news than expected

Like bungee jumpers hurtling from the heights of jubilation to the depths of despair and back again, Salmon Arm’s Krawczyk family has been living an exhausting emotional journey.

A journey which at present has them, as the Prince song goes and Carolyn says, “partying like it’s 1999!”

The Krawczyks – Carolyn, Matt, Hunter and Halle – are in Pittsburgh because 12-year-old Halle has been undergoing surgeries to remove tumours from a rare, one-in-20-million spinal cancer called ‘poorly differentiated chordoma.’

On Jan. 20, 22 and 26 she underwent surgeries performed by a world-renowned doctor and his team. The first two operations removed a tumour on the two upper vertebrae and the clivus behind the nose, while the third surgery fused Halle’s spine.

The surgeries went well and the family was ecstatic. But the feeling was not to last, after a red mass on Halle’s chest wall was noticed. A CT scan revealed it had a blood supply so was likely the spread of the chordoma.

Joy plummeted to despair.

“We were all assuming the worst,” Carolyn said. “We have been in dark places!”

However, on Feb. 4, the tears shed were tears of joy.

Read more: ‘Absolutely perfect’: Salmon Arm girl’s surgeries for tumour exceed expectations

Read more: Man who faced terminal prognosis offers hope to 12-year-old Salmon Arm girl

Read more: Young cancer survivor’s crafts raise $3,400 for Salmon Arm girl needing surgery

Doctors reported the mass on Halle’s side was from surgical positioning, being stuck in one position for so many hours. It was not a cancerous growth.

On Feb. 11 Halle had her second follow-up appointment and received more good news. Scans showed there was no sign of cancer anywhere in her body.

“Yep! You read that right!” Carolyn wrote.

“We will always hope this disease won’t rear its head again,” she went on. “Our doctor reminded us of the reality of what we are dealing with… that Chordoma typically recurs. Being stage 4 has always complicated things but Halle is this Phenom and we will keep all hope!

“This past four years have been such an emotional roller coaster! We’re hoping to be able to breathe easier for a while. Everyone here is elated and I know you will all be celebrating this amazing news too!!” Carolyn wrote on social media.

She reiterated how strong Halle has been.

“Halle is doing fantastic! The girl deserves a superhero suit! She has been through some rough stuff! It is hard for Matt and I to even watch some of it but Halle champions all of it.”

Halle sent Carolyn the video below after coming home from their good news appointment.

Carolyn added this explanation on social media: “(It’s ok, she really only needs the brace in case she falls. She is still wearing it throughout the day and only removes it for night.) She’s back to her goofy antics!”

The Krawczyks will stay in Pittsburgh for the next three weeks before going to Boston for proton beam radiation to take care of any remaining cells in the three surgical areas that would not be visible.

Carolyn said she and Matt marvel at Hallle’s wonderful medical team.

“We have a stellar group of very specialized doctors in close communication regarding Halle – all helping with and overseeing her case. I’ve never seen this in my life.”


marthawickett@saobserver.net
Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

CancerSalmon Arm

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

The Roxy Cafe has extended its patio into its parking spaces in order to keep dining options open during the latest pandemic health restrictions. (Downtown Vernon Association photo)
Consultation curbs downtown Vernon road closure

Closing ‘Main Street’ may not happen this summer

National Police Week runs May 9-15, 2021, and Vernon North Okanagan RCMP will be highlighting some of its great work on its social media platforms to celebrate its relationships with community groups and stakeholders. (Contribtued)
Collaboration crucial in police work: Vernon Mounties

National Police Week is a public awareness campaign encouraging new and strengthened connections

(Pixabay photo)
Morning Start: Sharks have been around longer than trees

Your morning start for Tuesday, May 11, 2021

BC Coroners Service logo, no date, stock photo
Police probe Lake Country man’s sudden death on parkway

Pelmewash Parkway was partially closed yesterday while RCMP, Coroners investigated

The southern mountain caribou, an iconic species for the Splatsin First Nation, is threatened with extinction, much to the dismay of the First Nation. (Province of B.C. photo)
Splatsin First Nation concerned over dwindling caribou herd

Southern mountain caribou at risk of extinction, will struggle to recover without habitat protection and restoration action - report

Members of the Vernon Kalamalka Chorus sing in their cars, tuned into the radio, under the direction of Debbie Parmenter. (Jennifer Smith - Morning Star)
VIDEO: Vernon choir steers around COVID with ‘carbershop’ twist

Singers find a unique way to practice during pandemic restrictions

Cloe Afton Papworth performs before a video camera to make her vocal entry for the First Virtual Shuswap Music Festival, held in April 2021. (R. Papworth photo)
Young Shuswap musicians hit record for virtual festival

Seven Shuswap Music Festival participants to compete at provincial level

Penticton Search and Rescue had to deploy its helicopter and high angle rescue team to evacuate an injured climber out of Skaha Bluffs Monday. (Mike Biden photo)
Injured climber helicoptered to rescue at Penticton’s Skaha Bluffs

This is the 7th rescue in a week for Penticton’s Search and Rescue

Kelowna Rockets forward Steel Quiring plays the puck against Kamloops Blazers forward Matthew Seminoff at Kelowna’s Prospera Place on Monday, May 11. (Contributed)
Kelowna Rockets burned in 10-2 loss to Kamloop Blazers

The Rockets gave up five power-play goals and were unsuccessful in their two power-play attempts

B.C. Labour Minister Harry Bains in the B.C. legislature, May 13, 2019. (Hansard TV)
B.C. to provide three days of sick pay for COVID-19 absences

Province will support employers on cost, labour minister says

(Pixabay)
B.C. doctors could face consequences for spreading COVID misinformation: college

College says doctors have a higher level of responsibility to not spread incorrect information

Dr. Bonnie Henry talks about phase two in B.C.’s COVID-19 immunization plan. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
All of B.C. will eventually ease out of COVID-19 restrictions at same time: Henry

People who have received two doses of a vaccine can’t yet return to post-pandemic activities with each other, she says

Winnipeg Jets’ Andrew Copp (9) and Edmonton Oilers goaltender Mike Smith (41) watch an incoming shot during second period NHL action in Winnipeg, Monday, April 26, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Fred Greenslade
‘Very jealous’: Canadian teams can’t take advantage of NHL’s relaxed COVID-19 rules

League eased some tight COVID-19 health and safety protocols over the weekend for fully vaccinated clubs

A map of Huu-ay-aht-owned forestry cutblock. (SUBMITTED PHOTO)
B.C. First Nations restrict access to territory in wake of forestry standoffs

Huu-ay-aht set up checkpoints after heated and dangerous incidents on southwest Vancouver Island

Most Read