While only eight years old, Shyanne Osmond has grown to be resilient. She has to be in order to face the daily health concerns that have impacted her life. Last year, Shyanne was diagnosed with Arteriovenous malformation (AVM), a rare condition that causes an abnormal connection of blood between her arteries and veins, creating a large tumour on her upper lip.
Last year, Shyanne and her family relocated to Burlington, Ont., in order to be closer to the medical care and attention that she needs.
Since The Free Press last spoke to the Osmonds in August, her condition has worsened, leading to more complications with her health.
“She went and had another angiogram surgery last week, and we found out that the tumour has now grown into the roots of her teeth, which is very dangerous. It has also grown up her nasal passage as well. They don’t want to go in and do another surgery because obviously it’s not working, so we are waiting,” said Amber Osmond, Shyanne’s mother.
Osmond said they are waiting to do a “complex round”, where all of the medical professionals and cancer doctors gather around Shyanne to discuss what the best course of action is, whether it is chemotherapy or radiation.
“Then after the new year, they are going to do another complex round but with the United States doctors as well,” she said.
The growth of the tumour has impacted Shyanne’s life, as she is not allowed to partake in much physical activity for fear that increased pressure will cause the tumour to start bleeding.
“In school, she’s not allowed to play with balls, she is not allowed to run. When it comes to gym, they give her a computer. They have all-day care for her at the school. There is another teacher that actually watches her throughout lunch and recess,” said Osmond. “The reason it is so dangerous now is because, before when it was just in her top lip, we could stop the bleeding. We could pinch it off ourselves. But now, because it’s up in her nasal [passage] and in the roots of her teeth, chances are we won’t be able to stop the bleeding. We got a letter from the doctors stating that if she is to start bleeding, to put a cold cloth on it, and if it doesn’t stop after a few minutes we have to get her to the emergency room in Burlington, where they will be able to give her a blood transfusion and fly her to Toronto because we won’t be able to stop the bleeding.”
Throughout all of the complications, Osmond said that Shyanne stays happy and positive. The Starlight Foundation arranged for Shyanne to meet Santa Claus at the Royal York Hotel in Toronto on Dec. 5, which was something that she was really looking forward to. Her school supports Shyanne, and enrolled her in the Make-a-Wish foundation. Her wish for this Chrismtas was to have her grandfather and her older brother, who live in Fernie, to come visit for Christmas.
Osmond said that while this is extremely difficult on the entire family, they are trying to stay positive.
“We’re just going day by day. Trying just to make the best of it,” she said.