Bretton Chitwood, 18, is an avid hockey player. He was diagnosed with osteosarcoma in 2016, but has since returned to the ice. He now plays with a custom prosthesis.
On May 18, 2016, Kara Chitwood and her son Bretton Chitwood traveled from their home in Lynden, Washington, to Seattle Children’s for what they thought would be a routine outpatient appointment to get magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) on Bretton’s ankle. Instead, they didn’t end up leaving the hospital. That day would become one they would never forget.
The pain Bretton was experiencing in his ankle was more insidious than they could have ever imagined. Doctors found a mass and said they needed to do a biopsy to determine what it was. One possibility was the unthinkable: cancer. Read full post »
When other kids ask Reid Watkins, 8, about the leg braces he wears, he likes to tell them they help him ‘walk awesome.’
The outgoing third grader was diagnosed with cerebral palsy and hydrocephalus at 16 months old. Until undergoing two surgeries over the course of two years at Seattle Children’s, both conditions had limited his ability to walk on his own.
That made taking part in this year’s Hydrocephalus Association Seattle WALK to End Hydrocephalus all the more important to Reid. For the last seven years, the Watkins family has participated in the walk at Magnuson Park as a way to raise awareness about the condition. Read full post »
Ramon Little, 9, has been rock climbing since he was 5 years old. Seattle Children’s and Outdoors for All partner to give children with limb differences the opportunity to rock climb. Photo by: Scott Filipiak
This weekend, a group of Seattle Children’s patients and families got together outside the walls of the hospital for a unique social – to climb a 30-foot rock climbing wall. For 8 years, Seattle Children’s and Outdoors for All have partnered together to allow children with limb differences the opportunity to rock climb.
Dr. Suzanne Steinman, a physician in the Hand and Upper Extremity Program who helps organize the event, says the social is a way to provide families the opportunity to get together and for kids to see they’re not alone.
“Every child who attends the event has something in common: they all have unique limbs,” said Steinman. “From congenital abnormalities of the hand or foot, to losses from amputation or trauma, kids get to see other kids with arms and legs just like theirs.”
Kenna Chapman, custom events and program manager at Outdoors for All, added, “Events like this make me feel like our work really does enrich the lives of people through recreation.” Read full post »
Chloe Howard, 18, was born with a severe and atypical form of a common foot deformity called clubfoot. About one in every 1,000 babies is born with clubfoot. She underwent two extensive operations on her foot in California before her first birthday. After she and her family moved to Seattle, she underwent a final corrective surgery at Seattle Children’s. Throughout her childhood, she wore corrective casts and braces and spent countless hours in the hospital.
After being bullied and assaulted by her classmates in high school because of her deformity, Howard bravely decided to stand up and share her story in hopes that her words would inspire others to embrace their imperfections and end bullying. Today, she’s the author of the book “Stand Beautiful,” and is on a mission to redefine beauty. Below is her story and powerful message to others. Read full post »
On Saturday morning, 10-year-old Agatha Holloway’s dream came true. Photo credit: Katie McCullough Simmons.
On Saturday morning, nearly 50 people gathered outside of 10-year-old Agatha Holloway’s home in the east central Seattle neighborhood of Madison Park to support the little girl with an incredible dream and fierce determination.
Her dream was to walk to her local ice cream shop, a journey that until recently seemed impossible. Read full post »
Jack Clark, 12, shows off his dance moves on skates.
Jack Clark, 12, was born to stand out. He excels in sports, lights up a room with his infectious smile, amazes bystanders with dance moves on skates, and walks with a gait unique to him – with a prosthesis covered in flames. Jack was born with a disability, but he’s never let it slow him down. From the wrestling mat, to the roller skating rink, he always finds a way to thrive in the face of adversity.
“Most people see my disability as a disadvantage, but personally I see it as an advantage,” said Jack.
Jack was born with rare conditions affecting both of his legs – proximal femoral focal deficiency (PFFD) in both thigh bones and fibular hemimelia in the left lower leg. Isolated PFFD occurs in about one in 50,000 children and fibular hemimilia occurs in about one in 40,000 children. Read full post »
Lisa went into labor expecting her daughter wouldn’t survive.
Lisa Booth was 40 weeks and 6 days into what had been a completely normal pregnancy when she received unexpected news during an ultrasound.
“Everything was fine at 9 a.m. At noon, I was told my daughter would be a dwarf. By 4 p.m., I was told she wasn’t going to survive,” said Booth. “I went home in a completely shell-shocked state.”
Hours later, Booth went into labor expecting the worst.
“Going into labor I was thinking she wouldn’t survive,” she said. Read full post »
Agatha and her brother order ice cream at their favorite ice cream shop, Scoop Du Jour.
Nearly half a mile away from 10-year-old Agatha Holloway’s home is a quaint family owned ice cream shop called Scoop Du Jour. It’s her favorite ice cream shop, and she’s always dreamed of being able to walk there. But until recently, that journey was physically too far for her to walk.
Agatha’s declining mobility made walking long distances impossible, but today, thanks to Seattle Children’s Orthopedics and Rehabilitation Medicine teams, Agatha’s dream has come true. Read full post »
Active kids enjoy improved mental wellness and reduce their risk of heart disease. While the days are short and the weather is often cold or dreary, kids still need to be getting physical activity each and every day.
February is American Heart Month and On The Pulse asked Emily Carter, athletic trainer, and Dr. Monique Burton, director of the Sports Medicine Program, to share ideas for indoor activities that put a smile on a child’s face and get their heart pumping. Read full post »
With 2018 in full effect, On the Pulse is taking a moment to hit rewind to share five stories that might have floated beneath the flurry of headlines in 2017.
We invite you to take a look back at some of last year’s stories that inspired us and gave us hope.
Courtesy of Amanda De Vos Photography
Amanda De Vos, a professional photographer, was reviewing shots she took of her 15-month-old identical twin daughters, Julia and Jemma, when a photo of Julia caught her attention.
De Vos would learn that the photo she took of Julia would help to identify a rare eye cancer, retinoblastoma, that was stopped in its tracks with an innovative treatment at Seattle Children’s.
Read full post »