Dylan Elsnes recovering from bone cancer
by Samara Postuma
Sixteen year old Dylan Elsnes was just a healthy, active sophomore at St. Michael-Albertville High School when he was thought to have fractured his leg while out shopping Thanksgiving night. “He tripped in the parking lot and doctors said it was a fracture,” Dylan’s uncle Brent Curnow said.
When his leg didn’t seem to be improving, Dylan and his parents went back to the doctor again and was told it was still healing.
The family then decided to get a second opinion and were shocked to find that he had a 5-by-3-inch tumor on his fibula. “It wasn’t what we thought we would find out,” his mom Danielle Elsnes said. On Jan. 10 Dylan was diagnosed with osteosarcoma or otherwise known as bone cancer in his upper right calf and was told to begin chemotherapy immediately.
He began chemotherapy treatments at the University of Minnesota Amplatz Hospital where he stays 4 to 5 days each treatment. Prior to surgery in April that removed 6 inches of his fibula bone, he’d already had 12 rounds of chemo.
“The surgery went well and he’s handling recovery really well,” Danielle said, now that Dylan’s home. “He’s surprisingly in good spirits and hasn’t even had to take his pain meds since we’ve been home.”
With chemo that takes Dylan out of school for weeks at a time, he’s no longer able to go to school and a home-bound tutor comes to the house. “He’s a pretty quiet and academic kid but he also enjoys getting to play video games with his friends,” Danielle said, noting that he had lettered in academics last year.
Good news came in a week to the day after the surgery that Dylan will need only 18 more weeks of chemo and a full recovery is expected. “The cancer cells in the tumor were 100% DEAD!” Danielle wrote on the Caringbridge site Monday night.
“That good news definitely helped his good outlook because it could have been 29 more weeks. We’ll take 18,” Danielle said.
“He’s a great kid, a brainiac,” Curnow said. “We are all very hopeful and appreciative.”
“Definitely looking forward to the next chapter,” Danielle said.
There will be a benefit for Dylan Elsnes Sunday, April 28, from 2-6 p.m. at the St. Michael Legion. There has also been an account set up at Highland Bank to cover medical expenses. For more information about Dylan and his battle with bone cancer you can visit his caring bridge page at www.caringbridge.org/visit/dylanelsnes.