Devon Still, defensive tackle for the Cincinnati Bengals took to Instagram to ask for prayers for his daughter, Leah, who had a setback in her fight against cancer.
Leah, 5, was diagnosed with neuroblastoma in June, 2014. A tumor was removed from her abdomen and she started chemotherapy to eradicate the cancer cells in her bone marrow. Devon has been documenting the treatment and major milestones on the social media platform ever since his daughter's diagnosis.
The 5-year-old girl went into a hospital on May 5 to start the process of getting a stem cell transplant. The 4-to-6-week process involves high doses of chemotherapy at the outset. Devon posted on Instagram late Friday that Leah "hit a pretty serious complication," with her liver affected by the chemotherapy. "They caught it early so hopefully it gives the doctors a better chance of stopping it from getting aggressive," Devon posted. "As you can imagine our minds are all over the place but we're going to try and remain positive!"
The setback was Leah was diagnosed with Hepatic veno-occlusive disease (VOD). It is a complication that affects the liver and can occur in patients who have undergone stem-cell transplants.
Devon's Appeal to his fans:
I need some prayers sent up for Leah tonight! We hit a pretty serious complication from the stem cell transplant called VOD. They caught it early so hopefully it gives the doctors a better chance of stopping it from getting aggressive. As you can imagine our minds are all over the place but we're going to try and remain positive! #LeahStrong #WaitingForTheDayEverythingReturnsToNormal
Leah's fight with cancer has gotten international attention. The Bengals also gave back all proceeds of Still's jersey to pediatric cancer research, totaling over $1 million dollars.