Before leukemia, 4-year-old Luke Lambert was a ‘care-free and fun wild child’ who loved to play with the students at the school where his parents taught.
“He was like a little school mascot,” said Luke’s mother, Lauren.
When Luke was diagnosed with leukemia at Monroe Regional Medical Center, the doctors there recommended UF Health Shands Children’s Hospital for his treatment. His family took their advice, and Luke was brought under the care of our pediatric oncology teams.
He was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia (T-cell), receiving chemotherapy treatment since January 2016.
While the diagnosis is difficult, the Lamberts have experienced many positives since they learned of Luke’s illness.
“The most positive outcome has been the outpouring of love and support we’ve received,” Lauren said.
That love and support extends to the Lambert’s medical family, too.
“Our doctors are the best! We love Dr. Bill [Slayton]. He always takes the time to chat with us and makes Luke laugh. Luke has lots of favorite physician assistants, fellows and nurses,” she said.
Because UF Health Shands Children’s Hospital is part of the CMN Hospitals network, many of the patient programs, services, equipment and research projects are funded by donations to CMN. Invaluable programs like Child Life, which helps normalize hospital stays for young patients, specialized equipment like new pediatric infusion chairs and even renovated spaces especially for children all complement the care provided by medical teams.
“The level of care at UF Health Shands Children’s Hospital has meant a lot,” Lauren said. “Luke loves going to clinic to play with the toys and to see his favorite nurses and doctors.”
This time next year, the Lamberts look forward to fewer clinic visits and no more chemotherapy. Luke is in the maintenance phase of treatment, and his end-of-treatment date is schedule for June 2019 – just in time for Luke to play “mascot” again at his parents’ school.
Interested in learning more about our CMN Ambassador Program? Visit giving.UFHealth.org/ambassadors.
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