Alexander Goodwin, the 9-year-old British boy who came to Kansas City for cancer treatment after being misdiagnosed back home, recently finished what he hopes was his final round of chemotherapy.
But his medical calendar remains heavily booked.
Alex has some tests scheduled for this week as well as continued physical therapy on his medically rebuilt right leg, said his father, Jeff Goodwin. Then it’s off to Disney World for two weeks before returning to Children’s Mercy Hospital for six weeks of radiation on his left hip to make sure the Ewing’s sarcoma lesions there are dead.
In July, he’ll head back to the University of Kansas Hospital for his second surgery there. In January, surgeons replaced his right hip, femur, knee and part of his shin bone with artificial parts. They also removed some soft tissues in the leg to make sure they got all the cancer cells.
Next, surgeons plan to replace that artificial femur with another one that can lengthen as Alex grows. If all goes well, Alex should get to fly home in late August.
He’ll need to return to Kansas three or four times a year for detailed leg scans and to use magnets to lengthen that prosthetic femur to match the growth of his left leg.
“The leg will expand at the flick of a switch,” said Jeff Goodwin, a police officer in Warwickshire who sought help for Alex at KU Hospital and Children’s Mercy after law enforcement officials here recommended the two facilities.
Physical therapy appointments will fill Alex’s calendar for the next year at least, his father said.
Alex celebrated finishing chemotherapy with a Monday visit to Lakeside Nature Center, which has become a favorite spot for the nature and bird lover. He especially admires raptors.
His family is working on a book and documentary about Alexander’s journey, which his family has documented through Facebook and Twitter, where he has more than 22,500 followers. He appears nearly daily in Twitter or Facebook videos that give updates about his experiences.
Many people, especially in the police community in the United Kingdom and the United States, have rallied around Alex through prayer and fundraising events, which are helping pay for his treatment.
His 10th birthday, which he will celebrate in late May, should be much better than the day he turned 9.
“Last year he was on morphine every two hours for the pain and was bedridden,” his father said. “Thanks to the medical professionals in Kansas (and Kansas City), that is no longer the case.”