16-Year-Old With Face Tumor Defies Doctor’s Expectations by Surviving Past First Birthday

Doctors never believed Jacqueline Rodriguez, who has large tumors on her cheeks, tongue and chest, would never make it past her first birthday.

But the California 16-year-old, who suffers from lymphatic malformations, is exceeding expectations with remarkable perseverance.

The teen is about to graduate high school, and hopes to pursue nursing at Stanford University to help others.

“I want to be a nurse because I grew up in a hospital helping my nurses take care of others,” she told Barcroft TV.

Her mom, Evelyn Belen, 52, said doctors told her while she was pregnant with Jacqueline that her daughter’s quality of life would be very low, and she was given the option to terminate the pregnancy.

“We chose life,” Belen said.

Jacqueline had her first surgery at just 3 days old.

“They took off two almost golf ball-sized tumors from her throat,” her dad, Paul Rodriguez, 60, said. “At first she couldn’t even swallow. We had to give her formula through her g-tube.”

They explained the tumors keep growing back, but different medications and treatment are helping keep the condition from growing.

Jacqueline continues to eat through a feeding tube and speaks through an iPad, but doesn’t let her health get in the way of being a normal teenager.

“I like playing my guitar and playing tennis,” she said. “Tennis helps with my confidence by knowing I am strong enough to play a sport. I’m a normal human being that has health issues like everyone else.”


12-Year-Old Can Smile Again After Having 6-Pound Tumor Removed From Face

Baby Girl With Giant Facial Tumor Has Multiple Surgeries to Remove It – See the Transformation

Surgeons Remove Grandmother’s 140-Pound Tumor: ‘I Noticed I Was Getting a Little Plump’

NBC4i.com provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others and keep the conversation on topic and civil. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s