A DESPERATE mum has pleaded with medics for cancer treatment to extend her two-year-old son’s life.
Defiant Gemma Lowery, mum of brave toddler Bradley – who is fighting rare childhood cancer neuroblastoma – says she will not rest until something can be done to help her son after doctors told her they cannot remove a tumour from his chest.
The youngster underwent life-saving surgery in July to remove the main tumour, in his stomach, at Newcastle’s Royal Victoria Infirmary (RVI).
The family had pinned their hopes on a second operation taking place at the end of this month, to remove five more tumours from Bradley’s chest and lungs.
But Gemma was dealt a devastating blow this week when medics at the RVI told her that the procedure will no longer happen as it will be “too dangerous” to operate.
Gemma, married to self-employed builder and roofer Carl, 30, and also mum to 11-year-old Kieran, said: “Obviously the first operation was horrendous and I didn’t like the thought of him going through that again.
“But I was using this one as his lifeline and to be told he can’t have it is devastating.”
Gemma, from Blackhall, asked the experts what happens next and inquired about radiotherapy.
But medics said they think the next step is to give Bradley high-dose chemotherapy as the risks of radiotherapy would be life-threatening, with high chances of scar tissue and a reduction in Bradley’s lung capacity as well as long-term effects.
Now doctors are weighing up the risks, though they have warned Gemma that they wouldn’t normally use this on the chest because of the complications it could cause the battling youngster.
But Gemma, a NHS health trainer at Healthworks in Easington Colliery, said: “If he can’t have radiotherapy I will go for a second opinion. I won’t stop fighting.
“I will go to London or even abroad if I have to.
“The RVI are amazing – but when it comes to your baby if they come back and say they can’t do radiotherapy, it’s too dangerous, then I have to have a second opinion.”
She added: “As a parent I would rather deal with the consequences and have him for the rest of his life than leave the cancer to spread.”
Gemma said doctors have told her Bradley has all the combinations of the genes that are more susceptible to neuroblastoma cells spreading faster than usual.
This will make him more likely to relapse and a £500,000 fund is already underway for treatment in the USA for any potential relapse.
Bradley has already had numerous rounds of chemotherapy since being diagnosed in January.
Following July’s operation, he still has an inch-wide tumour in his stomach, which was originally six inches.
Bradley has been picked as Hartlepool Round Table’s chosen charity to support this year through its annual Hartlepool Beer Festival, taking place at The Borough Hall on October 11-12.
The Round Table has already handed over £1,000 to Bradley’s fund, and proceeds from the Christmas grotto at Middleton Grange Shopping Centre will also go towards the cause.
To support Bradley, follow @bradleysfight on twitter or Bradley Lowery’s fight against neuroblastoma on Facebook.