Thursday, June 4, 2009
Medical Reports: Forget the Pain
Hospitals can be downright traumatic for kids, but a new program at Joe DiMaggio Children's Hospital is helping young patients forget the pain for a little while. Seven's Diana Diaz shows us.
WSVN -- Twelve-year-old Mariana Gonzalez is a very happy girl, despite her battle with cancer. It started in 2007, when doctors found a tumor in her kidney.
Ivelisse Gonzalez: "We go for different rounds of treatment, they removed the kidney."
A few months ago, the cancer spread to her lungs so she had to come back to Joe DiMaggio Children's Hospital for treatment.
But this visit is different thanks to a new in-house TV program. "The Daily Game Show" allows the kids to play from their rooms without ever having to leave their beds. Key for patients like Mariana who needs chemotherapy.
Mariana Gonzalez: "Because it's like something really fun to do, and I don't have to do so many things and run around. I can just call and play the game."
The show asks questions kids answer over the telephone, giving them something to look forward to while in the hospital and providing a distraction from their pain.
Mariana Gonzalez: "Most of the time it helps me get my mind off of stuff, and it's like really fun to play."
Michelle Barone knows how important that is to her daughter. Christa was diagnosed with cancer at the age of 3.
Michelle Barone: "Takes all the air out of your sails. Everything comes to a jolting stop, and you re-evaluate everything in your life."
Her family practically lived at the hospital during Christa's treatment. She's cancer free now, but her mom wishes a program like this was available back then.
Michelle Barone: "It brings the family together, and it gives them something to look forward to."
Mariana is all smiles because she won the game and some cool prizes. Her treatment is done, and she is ready to head home to be with her family.
Ivelisse Gonzalez: "I'm pretty sure she is cancer free. Now she is a survivor."
Diana Diaz: "Mariana also started her own foundation to help raise money for children suffering from cancer."
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