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Mother passes cancer to baby through placenta




Story from March this year:
A nine-month old baby girl is struggling to survive after being diagnosed with cancer, which US doctors say she inherited from her mother in the womb.
Addison Cox’s mother, Briana, was first diagnosed and treated for melanoma six years ago, but thought she was cancer-free when she became pregnant with Addison, America’s ABC News reports.
But when Addison was a few weeks old doctors at a local hospital in Pheonix discovered the disease had returned and was now a stage four metastatic malignant melanoma which had been spreading through her body during her pregnancy.
Briana ultimately died of the cancer on February 12.
Doctors had initially been certain that Briana’s cancer would not have been passed on to Addison because there have been fewer than a dozen cases in the last decade where cancer was transmitted from mother to child.
But Briana insisted her daughter be tested and doctors discovered she also had stage four melanoma which had been passed onto her through the placenta during pregnancy.
Briana’s husband and Addison’s father James Cox told website azfamily.com finding out his wife’s cancer had returned was like “running into a brick wall”.
"It knocks the wind out of you. It was like being punched in the chest. And when Addison was, it was like being ejected from a car. You wonder, what's next?" he said.
Mr Cox said the cancer had now spread to several parts of Addison’s body.
"It's very similar to her mother's — in the brain, one in her shoulder, in her lungs, kidney, liver, leg, even the back of her tongue," Mr Cox said.
"Bri went through the emotions of ‘my baby, my fault,’ but everyone told her it's not her fault. No one took better care of themselves than her."
Doctors believe the reason Briana’s cancer went unnoticed was because the symptoms, such as fatigue and memory loss, mimicked symptoms of pregnancy.
Addison has been given two years to live by doctors. She is currently being treated with an experimental drug which is not covered by the family’s health insurance.
The family is currently trying to raise funds in the community for her treatment.

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