Published by BBC NEWS - 25th April 2023
  • Published
A photo of PoppyImage source, Family photo

The parents of a four-year-old girl with leukaemia are appealing for a stem cell donor.

Poppy, from St Austell, Cornwall, was diagnosed with the blood cancer in 2022 and finished her treatment in September.

But, in April 2023, her parents noticed bruising on Poppy’s legs and took her to hospital.

They found she had relapsed with another type of leukaemia and she is now receiving chemotherapy.

Poppy’s mother Abby said: “We thought our life was going to get back to some normality, and it did for six months. And then it all came crashing down again.”

Doctors found she had acute myeloid leukaemia, which is cancer of the white blood cells.

According to the NHS, it is a rare type of the disease, with about 3,100 people diagnosed with it each year in the UK.

Abby is hoping her son Oliver can donate his stem cells for a bone marrow transplant, but the family are still waiting to see if he is a match.

She said: “We’re praying he’s going to be a match for Poppy. But, if not, they will have to look on the global register to see if they can find somebody else who could be a match.”

A photo of Poppy aged two

Image source, Family photo

She is urging people to join the stem cell register.

“The more people we can get out there, the more chance we’ll have of finding Poppy a match,” she said.

Poppy’s family says she will be at Bristol Children’s Hospital until Christmas as she undergoes treatment.

Abby said: “We cried for days. Now we’ve gotten past the initial shock.

“We’re all cried out at this point, we’re focusing on every single day as it comes.

“All we can do is hold on to every bit of hope that Poppy’s going to get better, and, if that means living in Bristol until Christmas, then that’s what we have to do.”

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