We wanted to share an extraordinary story experienced by one of our estimators, Luke. He has recently welcomed his baby boy into the world after a very unique and incredible journey.
For Alana and Luke Palaziol, the arrival of their baby boy Hudson was more special than they could ever describe. When 34-year-old Alana was Diagnosed with cervical cancer five years ago, she thought her future of having a family was dashed.
The Stage 1 cancer she developed is traditionally treated with a radical hysterectomy and removal of all the pelvic lymph nodes. However, gynaecological oncologist Dr Jim Nicklin came to the rescue – performing a new surgery which removes the cervix, but potentially saves the fertility of the patient, called a radical trachelectomy. The surgery allows women to become pregnant after cervical cancer treatment – which hasn’t always been the case,” Dr Nicklin said.
For the couple, pregnancy was an exciting journey that brought new anxieties to surface. “We were always told we could potentially get pregnant, but the unknown was how long I could hold the pregnancy for,” Alana said. “We’d be so excited to get to each milestone – 12 weeks, 20 weeks, and 28 weeks.”
Obstetrician Dr Stephen Cook said Alana was the first patient he had treated who had a pregnancy after a radical trachelectomy. “She did remarkably well,” Dr Cook said. “Her pregnancy was straightforward – in fact the only reason she needed to deliver Hudson at 34 weeks was because she had pre-eclampsia.”
Little Hudson Bailey arrived a couple of weeks earlier than expected, in August 2016. He was in a special care nursery for four weeks, and the Palaziol family are now back at home with their little bundle of joy. “We really want to let people know that this procedure is possible for young women who have cervical cancer,” Alana said. “It may not be suitable for some patients, depending on their situation, but the surgery that I had saved us and allowed us to have a family.”
This article was originally published in the Wesley Hospital’s magazine the Wesleylink (www.wesley.com.au)