Power of Support During a Cancer Journey
- Anna “Chickadee” Cardwell, the eldest daughter of 48-year-old June “Mama June” Shannon, is battling stage 4 adrenal carcinoma (ACC).
- Cardwell first noticed stomach pain before her diagnosis.
- Cardwell and her mother reportedly grew apart, but the cancer diagnosis may be bringing them closer together.
- Adrenal Carcinoma, which is also called adrenocortical cancer, is a rare cancer that starts in one or both of the small, triangular glands (adrenal glands) located at the top of your kidneys, according to Mayo Clinic.
- Having family support before, during and after a cancer diagnosis is an important part of a cancer warrior’s journey to recovery.
Cardwell is fighting stage 4 adrenal carcinoma. Though she reportedly hasn’t been on speaking terms with her mom, June “Mana June” Shannon, photos show the mother-daughter duo was all smiles.
Honey Boo Boo star Mama June reunites with daughter Anna ‘Chickadee’ Cardwell amid her cancer battle https://t.co/Txk19NIfkX pic.twitter.com/tnBNyfNUmsRead More— Daily Mail US (@DailyMail) April 18, 2023 Earlier this month, it was revealed that Cardwell was battling stage 4 adrenal car carcinoma, a rare cancer that starts in one or both of the small, triangular glands (adrenal glands) located at the top of your kidneys, according to Mayo Clinic.
Adrenal glands make the hormones that instruct every organ and tissue in your body.
Cardwell was diagnosed back in January after experiencing stomach pain, family sources revealed to TMZ. Details on Cardwell’s specific type of adrenal carcinoma cancer she is battling have remained private.
While many longtime fans rallied behind the 28-year-old as she began her cancer journey, her sisters and reality television co-stars, 17-year-old Alana also known as “Honey Boo Boo”, 23-year-old Lauryn “Pumpkin” Efird, and 26-year-old Jessica “Chubbs” Shannon also supported her.
Cardwell and her mother reportedly grew apart.
The show “Toddlers and Tiaras” made Cardwell’s family members household names in 2011. The program gave viewers a behind-the-scenes look at the life of child beauty pageants. The show’s popularity launched a spinoff, “Here Comes Honey Boo Boo,” which ran for four seasons until 2017.
What Is Adrenal Carcinoma?
Adrenal carcinoma (ACC) is a rare cancer that begins in one or both of the adrenal glands at the top of your kidneys, according to the Mayo Clinic. It can occur at any age but mostly impacts children younger than 5 and adults in their 40s and 50s.
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“When adrenal cancer is found early, there is a chance for cure. But if the cancer has spread to areas beyond the adrenal glands, cure becomes less likely. Treatment can be used to delay progression or recurrence,” the Mayo Clinic explains.
And although it’s unknown what exactly causes this type of cancer, this type of cancer forms when a change (mutation) occurs in the DNA of an adrenal gland cell. People born with specific genetic conditions also have a higher risk of getting this disease.
If you’re worried about a growth that has formed in your adrenal glands, you likely don’t have to stress as most growths are benign (noncancerous).
Treatment options for adrenal cancer usually include surgery, chemotherapy, radiation therapy, and medication.
Adrenal Carcinoma Symptoms
Some symptoms of adrenal carcinoma cancer include:
- Weight gain
- Muscle weakness
- Pink or purple stretch marks on the skin
- Hormone changes in women that might cause excess facial hair, hair loss on the head, and irregular periods
- Hormone changes in men that might cause enlarged breast tissue and shrinking testicles
- Abdominal bloating
- Back pain
- Loss of appetite
- Loss of weight without trying
WATCH: Finding the Support You Need to Heal During Cancer Treatment.
Family Support During Cancer Journey
Anna “Chickadee” Cardwell’s cancer diagnosis seems to have brought her family closer together, which includes her husband, children, reality star sisters, and once-estranged mother “Mama June.”
SurvivorNet experts say having family support before, during, and after a cancer diagnosis is an important part of a cancer warrior’s journey to recovery.
Dr. Shelly Tworoger, a researcher at Moffitt Cancer Center told SurvivorNet that “there’s a number of common things cancer patients can experience, such as anxiety, depression, financial toxicity, social isolation.”
Knowing you have loved ones by your side at every step helps you process those emotions and cope with your new reality during your journey.
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