Remember Bella, Miracle Child!

In 2011, on New Years Day, Bella, only seven years old, was diagnosed with an ependymoma brain tumor.  Bella’s parents were “overwhelmed with emotions, fear and uncertainty about what the future would bring”, but explained Bella’s diagnosis to her like a “red dot” that had to be removed.

After having surgery, Bella’s first words were, “Is the red dot gone?”  Ten days after surgery, Bella began receiving proton radiation.  Eight months after that, Bella developed brain stem radiation necrosis, a rare side effect from radiation treatments.  From August-December 2011, Bella received 60 hyperbaric oxygen treatments, chemotherapy treatments, sleep studies, and physical, speech, and occupational therapy.

Mid December of 2011, Bella began choking and having difficulty breathing.  Bella’s mom, Kim, called Our Lady of the Lake Children’s Hospital where Bella was later admitted.  Less than 48 hours later, her ability to swallow and breathe was hindered so much that she was put on a ventilator and admitted to the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU).  After having an MRI, it was shown that Bella had a stroke.  Because doctors thought there was nothing more that could be done for Bella, she was removed from the ventilator.  Within five days, Bella passed away in her daddy’s arms and her mommy beside her.

Kim and Trey Bowman carry on the memory of their daughter, Bella and continue to support Our Lady of the Lake Children’s Hospital annually through the Bella Bowman Foundation.  They praise the Our Lady of the Lake Children’s Hospital staff for being a source of strength and comfort throughout Bella’s treatment, in her final days, and after her passing.  Kim and Trey return to several Our Lady of the Lake Children’s Hospital events to encourage others to give back to this place of hope and healing.

“Bella was a courageous and strong eight-year-old little girl who did not fear her battle with brain cancer…She gave belief, hope, courage, strength, and faith to so many.  Although Bella is in heaven, her kind, loving, and strong, sweet spirit will continue to be shared with many.”*

Did you know?

The entire third floor of the new freestanding Our Lady of the Lake Children’s Hospital will be dedicated to advanced inpatient and outpatient care for hematology & oncology patients.   Our Lady of the Lake is staffed with a wonderful group of experienced nurses with special APHON/CPON training in pediatric hematology and pediatric oncology.


Count down to Our Lady of the Lake Children’s Hospital’s Mediathon with us as we highlight some our patients that will be sharing their story with us live next week on iHeartMedia, WAFB-TV Channel 9, and the Louisiana Business Inc Publications!  To learn more about Mediathon, click here! 

 

*Bella’s story was adapted from bellabowman.org.

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