‘Amazingly brave’ two-year-old battling after rare cancer diagnosis
PUBLISHED: 08:00 26 January 2020 | UPDATED: 10:04 26 January 2020
An ‘amazingly brave’ two-year-old girl is preparing to endure another round of chemotherapy after being diagnosed with a rare kidney cancer.
Amelia Lewis, from Ipswich, was living the normal life of a bouncy, energetic toddler when her parents noticed a "scary" lump on her side in November 2019.
Sarah Old and her partner Matthew Lewis immediately took their daughter to see a doctor in Ipswich after noticing the lump but were sent home despite feeling more could be done.
"We knew there was something wrong," Miss Old said.
"So we decided to get a second opinion and they found some sort of mass around her kidney and liver area.
"We were sent to Kings College Hospital in London where they confirmed she has a cancerous tumour."
In fact, Amelia was suffering from a Wilms' Tumour, a rare type of cancer which only affects the kidneys of young children.
Only around 80 children in the UK are diagnosed with the cancer every year.
Despite the diagnosis, the youngster has coped well with her treatment, amazing her parents with her resilience.
"She has been amazingly brave," her mum said.
"Sometimes you can't believe that she has had chemo or an operation. She just bounces straight back.
"We have a bravery box at home which was an idea from the hospital so every time she comes back from a treatment she has a little bravery box present.
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"Her brother and sister have been brilliant as well. I think the important thing with them was to be honest. Tell them all the facts that we have and then support them as well as we can."
Now well into her treatment, Amelia has had two operations, the second of which took eight hours and saw surgeons remove the 12cm wide tumour and a kidney from the two-year-old.
After recovering well, Amelia and her family are preparing for what they hope will be the final stretch of her recovery. "The prognosis is quite good," Miss Old added.
"Amelia has to have another operation to remove some ovarian tissue which will be frozen in Oxford because they think radiotherapy treatment will leave her infertile.
"She then will have 10 weeks of radiotherapy and then another 27 weeks of chemotherapy and we'll then see how she is."
To support their daughter, both Miss Old and Mr Lewis have stopped working. Despite their workplaces being understanding, they are now having to fend for themselves and are starting to feel the financial pinch.
A fundraising page has been set up to help pay for their costs of travelling to and from Kings College Hospital in London and Addenbrookes Hospital, Cambridge, by their friend Alice who describes Amelia as their "little fighter".
"Any little helps. It would just help us care for Amelia as well as we possibly can," Miss Old said.
To donate to their cause, visit this website.