A little girl battling a rare blood disorder has issued a desperate plea for donors after her only match in the world pulled out at the last minute.
Evie Hodgson, 8, was due to undergo a bone marrow transplant this month but her donor cancelled just as she was getting prepared.
Mum Tina, of Whitby, North Yorkshire, said the chances of finding another donor are so slim doctors are planning a different course of treatment.
But the best hope Evie has of being cured is to find a stem cell transplant from a compatible donor.
The schoolgirl was diagnosed with deadly aplastic anaemia in May after she developed a pin prick rash on her back which didn’t fade.
Tests revealed she had low blood platelet levels, which medics initially thought might be leukaemia but a biopsy found no cancerous cells.
They were then given the devastating diagnosis and Evie was told she would need a bone marrow transplant.
Tina, 37, dad Andy, 49, and five-year-old brother William, were sadly not a match so a worldwide search was launched to find a donor.
To the family’s delight, a 10/10 match was found, with the anonymous donor agreeing to go ahead.
The family began to prepare for the transplant, including dental work and the removal of one of her ovaries, but to their horror, on August 14, they were told the donor had pulled out.
Tina, who works at RAF Flying Dales, said: ‘We were devastated, it was a huge blow. We have no idea why the donor changed their mind. Everything is confidential.
‘Evie has already been through so much. She thought she had a donor and now she doesn’t.
‘The donor pulling out is quite hard hitting but from our point of view we just want to raise awareness of the stem cell register.
‘It’s so easy to be a donor. It’s just like giving blood, but you could save a child’s life. Some people don’t even know they could be a match.
‘It’s so easy to join the register but only about 1% of the UK population is registered.’
Evie is set to undergo an immunosuppressant course of treatment while the search for a donor continues.
Her family have set up a Facebook group to raise awareness and to update progress on Evie’s journey.
Tina added: ‘The condition Evie has is life-threatening. She won’t survive without a transplant.
‘That’s why we are desperately appealing for any many people as possible to register as a stem cell donor.’
Evie said: ‘I need this transplant to save my life. Please sign the register to help save my life.’
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