MIRACLE MILE (CBSLA.com) — The parents of a baby girl with a rare brain tumor have decided to try alternative medicine, instead of chemotherapy, to help their child.
Tracy and Josh Ryan’s daughter, Sophie, was diagnosed with optic pathway glioma at eight and a half months old.
“Because she’s so young, she can’t have radiation. Because of the way the tumor sits on the optic nerve, and follows the optic path, and has affected so much of the optic pathway in her brain, it’s inoperable,” said Tracy.
The Miracle Mile couple started to do research and spoke with experts across the country.
They decided on a holistic approach of plant extracts, diet and alkaline water—a treatment plan for Sophie supported by their doctors.
“Because of the type of tumor that she has, it grows so slowly that we have months that we can wait and observe her…and try outside treatments. Because putting a nine-and-a-half-month-old through chemo is just unthinkable,” said Tracy.
Dr. Asher Taban, a neurosurgeon at Northridge Hospital Medical Center, has not treated Sophie. He said chemo is typically the best traditional option, but the family has time to monitor the growth of the tumor.
“This tumor grows very slowly, fortunately. You try to buy time until the patient’s brain grows…hopefully up to about age 3,” he said.
Taban added, “Sometimes (the tumors) don’t grow very much. Some other times they could even regress and even get smaller without getting any homeopathic or special water.”
In the meantime, fans have flocked to the “Prayers for Sophie” Facebook page with messages of support.
“We really feel strongly in our hearts that she is going to get better. We don’t see her being sick long-term, we see her getting better. We’re really praying for a lot of miracles,” said Josh.