First, she would almost definitely lose her kidney if surgery was performed, and unless we are absolutely certain that this spot is cancerous and life-threatening (thus making losing the kidney imperative), then it is not worth it at this point in time.
Second, they all agreed with Hazel's oncologist and medical team that since this spot has remained unchanged for at least 9 months, it becomes less likely that this is active disease.
Lastly, Dr. Bliss informed us that this spot is completely involved with Hazel's Inferior Vena Cava. This is a very large vein that carries deoxygenated blood from the lower half of the body back up to the heart (see picture below). If this vein is damaged, it is very likely that a person will not survive due to too much blood loss, and that is not something Dr. Bliss, nor we, want for Hazel.
So, for now, we continue to wait. Her next scan is scheduled for March 25th, which we will pray for it not only to be unchanged, but for it to be clear! My hopes are high because each day Hazel seems to be getting stronger, healthier and happier!
On an unrelated note, our family has made the decision to close Hazel's PO Box. We thank you all for the wonderful cards, letters and gifts sent to her; we will cherish them always. If you would like to continue to show your support, please consider sending cards to other children still in treatment, or donate to one of the many childhood cancer organizations I have listed on the blog!