7-year-old Orange County girl dies after monthslong battle with rare brain cancer

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Thursday, December 8, 2022
OC girl, 7, dies after monthslong battle with rare brain cancer
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A 7-year-old from Orange has died months after she was diagnosed with a rare form of brain cancer.

ORANGE, Calif. (KABC) -- A 7-year-old from Orange has died months after she was diagnosed with a rare form of brain cancer.

In January, doctors at Children's Hospital Orange County diagnosed Sarah Valdivia with diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma or DIPG. There is no cure.

The tumor was inoperable and usually occurs in kids between the ages of four to 11, affecting movement as it wraps itself around the brainstem. Sarah was one of only a few hundred children a year in the U.S. who get that diagnosis.

Her family had hoped a clinical trial at Stanford would help with the tumor.

Sarah's mother, Joana, posted on Instagram that her daughter lost her battle against cancer on Tuesday night.

"She fought bravely for over 10 months. We are heartbroken, but she is now cancer free."