Boy, 4, can’t start chemotherapy for brain cancer due to coronavirus diagnosis


NASSAU COUNTY, N.Y. (News 12/CNN) – A 4-year-old boy in New York is recovering from surgery to treat a brain tumor. He also needs chemotherapy, but he can’t get it because he has tested positive for COVID-19.

Matteo Ferruzzi, 4, was rushed to Cohen Children’s Hospital when he started feeling sick and developed additional symptoms, including his eyes crossing. It was discovered he had an inoperable, malignant brain tumor.

The 4-year-old had emergency surgery to relieve the pressure on his brain and was then sent home to recover before he could begin chemotherapy.

But that’s when things became more complicated: Matteo’s mother, Jennifer Ferruzzi, contracted COVID-19 and had to self-quarantine.

“It was hard for me to be in the bedroom, so sick, and hearing him out there and not being able to tell him, ‘It’s OK. Mommy’s here,’” Ferruzzi said.

Matteo eventually also tested positive for COVID-19, which his mom says has delayed him getting the life-saving treatment he needs.

“It’s such a crazy time for the whole world. We are all in a crisis,” Ferruzzi said. “The best time I can get a good cry in is when I am in the shower.”

Both mother and son were recently retested, but both are still positive for COVID-19. Ferruzzi is hoping and praying the next test will give doctors the go ahead to save Matteo’s life.

Once he gets to start chemo, the 4-year-old will have treatments for at least a year.

Ferruzzi has a message to parents during this heart-wrenching time:

“If your child is showing symptoms or complaining about something, absolutely get them into their pediatrician right away, and even if it’s nothing, it is better to be safe than sorry.”

She also thanked everyone who has contributed to a GoFundMe set up for the family. It has raised more than $42,000.

Copyright 2020 News 12 Long Island, Ferruzzi Family, GoFundMe via CNN. All rights reserved.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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