Scottsdale parents create tool to help navigate pediatric cancer drugs

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Anthony Conti helped form The Purple Soceity with the help of his wife Suzann and daughter Naitalia, who has cancer. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) Anthony Conti helped form The Purple Soceity with the help of his wife Suzann and daughter Naitalia, who has cancer. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
The Contis have a new, free app, called the Purple Drug Guide, to make cancer drugs easy to find and understand. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) The Contis have a new, free app, called the Purple Drug Guide, to make cancer drugs easy to find and understand. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
Nitalia wanted to start a foundation to help other kids battling cancer who didn't have the support system that she did. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) Nitalia wanted to start a foundation to help other kids battling cancer who didn't have the support system that she did. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
SCOTTSDALE, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) -

A Scottsdale family has created a tool to help parents of kids battling cancer. It is an endeavor that started with a 12-year-old girl and her brave fight against brain cancer. 

"She was like the mother hen, always watching out for her sisters and everybody else," said Suzann Conti of her daughter, Nitalia Conti. 

But at age 12, Nitalia started getting headaches.

"We thought maybe she needed glasses so I took the to the eye doctor and that's when they found something," Suzann said. "It just spiraled, it went crazy. They said they found a mass they didn't know what it was. They had to do emergency surgery."

Even in her battle against brain cancer, Nitalia was still thinking of others. 

"People were sending her letters and posters and gifts. She would give that to the other patients," Suzann said.

Nitalia wanted to start a foundation to help other kids battling cancer who didn't have the support system that she did. 

"When she said we're going to start a foundation, we said, 'How are we going to do that? We can't do that,' and she said, 'You watch, we're going to do it,'" Suzann said.

The Purple Society was formed and now, they have a new, free app, called the Purple Drug Guide, to make cancer drugs easy to find and understand.

"They gave us the release forms and we read through the drugs she was going to go onto. We knew nothing about those drugs which most parents don't know," said Nitalia's dad, Anthony Conti. He said their database has more than 10,000 drugs.

"How that drug will interact with other drugs, how much that drug should cost on a national basis," he said. "As a parent, that's trying to understand what you're giving your child. This is a tool every parent needs."

The Contis say if their daughter's gift can take away some of the stress out of this devastating news, the hard work is worth it. 

"They had only given Nitalia two months to live, and she lived two and a half years and she traveled and she lived and she loved," Suzann said.

Click/tap here to download the free azfamily mobile app.

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Lindsey ReiserLindsey Reiser is a Scottsdale native and an award-winning multimedia journalist.

Click to learn more about Lindsey

Lindsey Reiser

Lindsey returned to the Valley in 2010 after covering border and immigration issues in El Paso, TX. While in El Paso she investigated public corruption, uncovered poor business practices, and routinely reported on the violence across the border.

Lindsey feels honored to have several awards under her belt, including a Society of Professional Journalists Mark of Excellence Award, Hearst Journalist Award, and several National Broadcast Education Association Awards.

Lindsey is a graduate of the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University, and she currently serves as a mentor to journalism students. She studied for a semester in Alicante, Spain and also earned a degree in Spanish at ASU.

She is proud to serve as a member of United Blood Services’ Community Leadership Council, a volunteer advisory board for the UBS of Arizona.

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