FILER — Mia Trease was playing on a traveling softball team this summer when her knee started to hurt.
Her parents received a call during a softball tournament July 14 saying test results showed Mia — a 12-year-old from Filer — has a tumor on her leg. Mia was instructed to leave the game immediately and go to the hospital to get an MRI.
Within a few days, she was meeting with a surgeon and undergoing a biopsy at Primary Children’s Hospital in Salt Lake City.
It confirmed she has osteosarcoma, a type of cancer that starts in bones. The cancer is in Mia’s thigh, femur and knee, and has spread to her lungs.
Now, Mia is undergoing chemotherapy and has a rotationplasty surgery slated for mid-to-late October.
During the uncommon surgery, the bottom of her femur, knee and upper tibia will be removed — including the tumor — and her lower leg will be rotated 180 degrees and attached to the femur. Her foot will be backwards at the end of her thigh, essentially functioning as a knee, and she’ll use a prosthetic limb.
Over the last couple of months, community members and school groups have organized fundraisers to help Mia and her family, including many people who have brought meals to the Trease family.
Mia’s mother, Amaris Trease, is a nurse at St. Luke’s Magic Valley Medical Center, and coworkers have covered shifts for her so she can focus on taking care of Mia.
Trease and her husband both grew up in Filer. She said her family is thankful for all the community support they’ve received. “People have been amazing.”
To undergo chemotherapy, Mia is admitted to Primary Children’s Hospital for three weeks at a time, for four to five days each week.
Then, she’s back at home for two weeks. So far, she has been through one-and-a-half rounds of chemotherapy.
As for the upcoming surgery, “she’s really excited to get it over with,” Trease said, so she can start physical therapy. She wants to get back to playing softball.
“Mia is a very energetic, very athletic, competitive girl,” Trease said. I think that’s how everyone would think of her.”
This week marked a milestone for Mia: It was her first time attending seventh-grade at Filer Middle School since school started in early September. She attended for two days, including Friday.
“She was so excited,” Trease said.
Mia isn’t able to attend school regularly due to her illness. But doctors want her to go when she’s healthy enough, Trease said, mainly for the social aspect to keep her spirits up. That helps with healing.