An 11-year-old child is fighting for his life in Melbourne, Australia after doctors found him suffering from a rare case of cancer.
Arnav Varkula lost his mother Sushma Gulur Srinivas Rao to cancer in April 2015. Two years after Arnav's mother's death, in May 2017, Arnav started feeling pain in his knee. Arnav’s father Jeevan Varkala consulted the doctor, and after a series of tests for a month, the family’s worst nightmare was confirmed. The 11-yo had contracted cancer which was spreading fast.
"A PET scan plus MRI showed that Arnav had a “rare, aggressive form of cancer called osteosarcoma”, SBS Hindi reported.
Arnav had a few nodules in his lungs that looked benign. The doctors wished to confirm through a lung biopsy that it was benign and the pathology results for the lung specimen showed it was benign. During this surgery Arnav also had a double lumen port inserted to start chemotherapy," says Kunwar Amit Singh Jadaun, who is helping the family on behalf of Forum of Indian Australians.
In January 2018, doctors told Arnav’s father that a tumour was spreading aggressively and they tried something.
"But with no immediate solution in sight, Arnav then went to India in Jan 2018 with his father to try alternative medicine and meet his extended family and came back three weeks later," Mr Jadaun, who has started a fundraising campaign to help the family said.
Arnab was taken to the hospital on Friday, March 2, a day after his birthday for a possible above the knee amputation, and the wound had started leaking. The chest X-ray showed that a tumour in the lung had grown exponentially as there was a lot of fluid in his lungs.
The doctor then cancelled the amputation as it would do no benefit to the patient. The doctor also estimated Arnav’s life expectancy to a maximum of another one month.
11-year-old Arnav Varkula (left) with his family (Picture: SBS Hindi)
"Arnav knows. Sometimes he looks prepared. But at times he is very disturbed. He does not want to meet anyone. It is harrowing to think what this little boy is going through," Mr Jadaun added.
"Jeevan has nearly been out of work for the last eight months. He is trying to ensure the best possible care and support for his son. He has borrowed money from his family to help him through this struggle. He needs our support during the tough times," he further explained.
The community has come forward to support the family. FIA has raised over AUD 30,000 already, SBS Hindi reported.