Musbury teenager battles cancer

MUSBURY teenager Adam Hoare has been battling cancer for seven years and doctors have now told him chemotherapy is the last option.

The 19-year-old was diagnosed with malignant peripheral nerve sheath tumour in 2003. The condition means tumours tend to arise along the nerves.

Adam also suffers from neurofibromatosis, a genetically inherited disorder which affects the skin and nervous system and has been linked to cancer.

He has already had two operations to remove tumours, with the last one leaving him without the use of his left hand.

Mother Tracey said she was devastated when she learned the cancer had come back and operating was no longer a possibility.

She said: “Doctors have said they can’t operate on the tumour, in the chest wall cavity, because it’s hazardous. They have said chemotherapy is the last chance and they’re not sure if it will work.

“When they told me this, I nearly passed out. But Adam is determined to keep going and trying everything they have got. They are blasting him from all sides, with three different types of chemotherapy.”

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“It’s been a struggle and we’ve had our ups and downs, but we have to stay positive.

“As a mother, it’s hard to see your son ill. In fact, it’s hard for the whole family. Sometimes his little cousins have had to keep away from him when they’ve been unwell, because his immune system is low while he’s undergoing chemotherapy.

“Adam is very poorly now and this has got to him a bit - but he always stays positive.”

Doctors also found a small tumour in Adam’s right lung.

Tracey said: “Doctors hope the chemotherapy will shrink all the cancer, including anything that hasn’t been found, but there’s no guarantee.”

Tracey gave up her job at Musbury Primary School as a mealtime assistant to care for Adam. Now the family are struggling financially. Tracey explained the school is currently holding the post open for her.

Husband Tony works in the dispatch department at Axe Valley Carpets and has been based there since 1978.

Tracey said: “He [Tony] is torn between staying at home or working – but, of course, we need the money.”

At two-years of age Adam, who attended Musbury Primary School and Axe Valley Community College, was diagnosed as having neurofibromatosis after suffering from pain in his legs. It is one of the most common genetic disorders and Tony has it.

It affects the nervous system and the skin, causing non-cancerous tumours to grow on nerves throughout the body – which can lead to symptoms of hearing loss, facial weakness, headache or unsteadiness.

It is one of the most common causes of learning disabilities, which Adam has, and can increase the chances of developing cancer.

Tracey said: “We used to worry about the neurofibromatosis at the time and what the future held for him.

“But now he has cancer we take things day by day - that’s all we can do.”