A seven-year-old boy who desperately needed a stem cell transplant due to a rare autoimmune disease has finally found a match – with a donor in Brazil.
Finley Hill appeared on ITV's This Morning with his parents Jo and Paul in June to address the public to help him find a stem cell donor.
The seven-year-old, who suffers from hemophagocytic lymphohistiocytosis (HLH), had a very small chance of finding a match with only two percent of the UK in the stem cell register.
The condition causes the immune system to overreact, leading to inflammation and damage to tissues such as the liver, spleen and brain.
But after doctors in Birmingham searched the world & # 39; and & # 39; searched it again & # 39 ;, Finley and the family reappeared in the show on Monday to reveal that a game had been located in Brazil.
Finley Hill appeared this morning with his parents Jo and Paul in June to address the public to help him find a stem cell donor (photo: Jo, Paul and Finley this morning on Monday)
Today, Jo spoke with hosts Holly Willoughby and Phillip Schofield and revealed that she had received the phone call the family had been waiting for last Tuesday – on Finley & # 39; s first day at school.
She said: & # 39; It was Tuesday, Finn had gone back to school and we were asked to go to the hospital. It was Fin & # 39; s first day back, but they said they didn't need him to be there.
& # 39; So Fin went to school and Paul and I went to the Birmingham Children's & # 39; s Hospital and met his specialist. We were told that they had searched the world and searched it again, and there were five nine out of ten games for Finley in Brazil.
& # 39; All in Brazil. & # 39;
The seven-year-old, who suffers from a rare autoimmune disease, had a very small chance of finding a match with only two percent of the UK in the stem cell register (photo: Finley in June)
Jo explained that although it would be more ideal to find a ten out of ten, doctors said it was better to go with a nine & # 39; then waiting for a ten they might never find.
& # 39; We wanted a ten, but they said it was better to go with a nine while doing so well, than waiting for a ten that might never come, & # 39; said Jo.
& # 39; He could deteriorate, so we go for it. & # 39;
By the end of October, Finley will undergo surgery to apply a central line to his chest before he & # 39; intense chemotherapy & # 39; undergoes.
Jo said: & # 39; Finley will have a central line in his chest by the end of October and then on November 11 he will go to the hospital and undergo intense chemotherapy for a week.
After doctors in Birmingham have searched the world & # 39; and & # 39; have searched again & # 39 ;, Finley and the family re-appeared on the show to reveal that a match had been located in Brazil
By the end of October, Finley will undergo surgery to apply a central line to his chest before he & # 39; intense chemotherapy & # 39; undergoes
& # 39; Then, on November 18, he gets his transplant, for which the cells are flown in from the amazing 43-year-old Brazilian gentleman. & # 39;
Finley and his family will only hear very limited details about the stem cell donor for two years, after which both parties can agree to make contact.
& # 39; That's all we will know for two years, & # 39; said Jo. & # 39; How can you love someone you've never met? But they help our boy so we already do him.
& # 39; We would like to meet him, yes, certainly & # 39 ;.
Despite the happy news, Jo and Paul are more than aware of the tough process their son is going through.
Finley and his family will hear very limited details about the stem cell donor for only two years, after which both parties can agree to contact
But the family is determined to keep an eye on & # 39; the price & # 39; despite the risks & # 39; s and & # 39; terrible side effects & # 39 ;.
Jo said: & # 39; There are so many unknowns and that is the hardest part.
& # 39; We know that there are many risks associated with it and that there are some terrible side effects, but you have to keep an eye on the price & # 39 ;.
Finley said he was a little scared & # 39; is for the process – because he has to undergo surgery.
He said: "It's because I have to undergo a minor operation when they insert the central line and I just feel a little scared."
WHAT IS HLH?
Hemophagocytic lymphohistiocystosis – or HLH – is a rare autoimmune disease that usually occurs in young children.
There are two types of disorders: familial and acquired.
- Enlargement of the liver
- Swollen lymph nodes
- Skin rash and jaundice
- Cough and respiratory problems
- Stomach pain, vomiting and diarrhea
- Headache, difficulty walking, visual disorders and weakness
HLH can be treated by chemotherapy, immunotherapy, steroids and antibiotics.
If these forms of treatment fail, patients may have to undergo a stem cell transplant.
Source: Hopkins Medicin
The Finley symptom started in 2016 when he was four and a half years old at the nursery, Mrs. Hill said.
& # 39; Finley complained of headache, which is strange for a four-year-old to have a headache, & # 39; she added in June.
For Finley, his brain was the first to be hit. Some HLH patients develop neurological symptoms such as seizures, mood swings, headaches, altered consciousness, and altered vision.
Mrs. Hill said at the time: & # 39; They said his images (of his brain) were so bad that they thought he would be compressed. & # 39;
Within 24 hours of the family's appearance on This Morning in June, more than 11,000 people have signed up to donate stem cells with DKMS.
Jo said: & # 39; It was phenomenal, more than 11,000 people joined DKMS within 24 hours, giving hundreds and hundreds of other families hope and opportunity.
& # 39; It is clearly an ongoing process and it takes time, but it was brilliant. & # 39;
Speaking in June, Jo revealed that although the family did not have a & # 39; time scale & # 39; where they had to find a donor, every time they were & # 39; sick & # 39; felt & # 39; scared & # 39; goods.
& # 39; They didn't give us a real time, but we know that his medication doesn't keep him unlimited, we don't take it for granted, & # 39; she said.
& # 39; Every time he has a nose bleed or says he has a headache or stomach ache, we are afraid & # 39 ;.
Paul added: & # 39; Our life is focused & # 39 ;.
Further details about the donor are not known.
HLH, where the immune system responds abnormally, usually affects infants up to about 18 months, but can affect people of any age.
The exact prevalence is unknown, according to the National Organization for Rare Disorders, but one study estimates about one in 100,000 among young people under 18 years of age.
DKMS organizes donor recruitment in the UK. It says there are around 2,000 people in the UK who are looking for a blood stem cell donation every year and that more than 37,000 people are waiting worldwide.
If you are between 17 and 55 years old and generally in good health, take the first step to register as a blood stem donor by registering for your cotton swab set at www.dkms.org.uk
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