At three years of age, Braden Hofen was diagnosed with stage IV Neuroblastoma.
This is Braden’s Story…
Braden Hofen was born September, 9th 2004.
Just three months after celebrating his third birthday, Braden was diagnosed with stage IV Neuroblastoma. Neuroblastoma is a solid mass tumor and Braden’s tumor was so large it was pushing organs out of its way. The tumor had invaded almost every bone in his body from his skull to his femur. And it was also in his bone marrow. This three-year-old toddler who had opened Christmas presents three days prior to his diagnosis, now lay in a hospital bed holding his arm above his head to accommodate the growing tumors and faced a very poor prognosis with just a 35% chance of surviving for 5 years.
Braden had extensive surgeries, round after round of high dose chemotherapy, radiation, a bone marrow transplant, and countless other treatments over the next 18 months.
He knew the hospital to be “Home” spending the majority of his days facing harsh treatments trying to save his life. The efforts paid off, the doctor’s believed his cancer was in remission. That good news was short lived.
Only three months later and at just 5 years of age, Braden’s Neuroblastoma relapsed. While others were preparing for the milestone of starting Kindergarten, Braden and his family were told there was “no known cure” for relapsed Neuroblastoma, Braden’s survival odds fell to less than ten percent.
Unbelievably, Braden’s mom, Deliece, was diagnosed with stage II Breast Cancer shortly after Braden’s relapse.
Mother and son were now fighting cancer together and even had chemotherapy on the same days in two different Kansas City locations.
Because there was “no known cure” for Braden’s cancer, Doctors ordered empirical treatments with unknown results. Despite the odds, Braden’s doctors found no evidence of disease. Braden and Deliece were in remission. Braden began daily treatments designed to keep his cancer at bay.
Braden found joy in the little things and he and his family made so many memories— as a cancer free family— until 2013.
Braden was 8 years old and would face yet another deadly disease: a secondary form of Leukemia caused by the treatments designed to save his life from his Neuroblastoma. Doctors told the family they had never seen a child survive this form of Leukemia after relapsed Neuroblastoma. Braden embodies hope and he had proven them wrong before!
“No family understands more than the Hofen family that families fight cancer together.”
Braden’s only option for a cure was a bone marrow transplant. No family understands more than the Hofen family that families fight cancer together. Braden’s bother Zach, 10 years old at the time, was a perfect match. In true form, Braden survived and continues defying the odds today and remains in remission from both of his cancers.
Today, Braden enjoys riding his bike, playing basketball, and playing Minecraft™ video games. He hopes to live a very long, cancer-free life!