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Joy for family as breakthrough comes days before Christmas
9:12am Thursday 2nd January 2014 in News
The family of six-year-old Ellie Davidson celebrated a very merry Christmas after hearing a bone marrow donor has been found for her.
Ellie, a pupil at Collingbourne Primary School, was diagnosed with leukaemia for the second time in September and, last month, doctors told her family she will need a bone marrow transplant.
When her parents Hannah Mortimer and Richard Davidson discovered neither they nor Ellie’s three-year-old brother Oscar were matches they set out on a campaign to find a donor.
Then, just before Christmas, Bristol Children’s Hospital, where Ellie has been treated, said a perfect bone marrow match had been found in Germany.
Mum Hannah Mortimer said: “I couldn’t believe it when I got the phone call because I was having a bad day. I was sitting in Salisbury Hospital with Ellie when the nurse came in and said there was someone on the phone from Bristol.
“I didn’t think they would tell me over the phone. I thought they were checking in to see how Ellie was.
“I rang Richard at work. I told him to get the tissues because I had good news and we were both crying down the phone.
“There have been a lot of happy tears. It’s the best Christmas present ever.”
Ellie, who was well enough to spend Christmas at home, was due to restart chemotherapy on Friday but will not now have the treatment to make sure she is strong enough for the transplant.
The transplant process is due to start in Bristol in a couple of weeks and Ellie will have to stay in isolation for three months.
Miss Mortimer said: “Ellie doesn’t really understand what all the fuss is about. I’ve told her that it’s special medicine and someone needs to be a match and we’ve found someone so she is happy.
“We’ve got a long wait until she’s on the road to recovery. It’s going to be tough because before she can have the transplant all of her bone marrow has to be taken out of her and she’ll just have no immune system, but we can all sleep a little easier now.”
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