Parents of Beatriz Farmer-Maia raise over £30,000 to fund her treatment to beat childhood cancer
PUBLISHED: 10:02 19 November 2019 | UPDATED: 10:28 19 November 2019
Laura Farmer Maia
Parents of a toddler diagnosed with an aggressive childhood cancer are crowd funding to raise money for her treatment, and have already hit the £30,000 mark.
Beatriz Farmer-Maia was just two-years-old when doctors found out last year that she had high-risk neuroblastoma, with a 40 to 50 per cent chance of long-term survival.
Neuroblastoma (NB) is a type of childhood cancer that forms in certain types of nerve tissue.
When it is classified in the high-risk category it means the tumour cells have already spread to other sites in the body.
Doctors initially thought Beatriz, or Bibi, had a recurring virus when she had a fever that lasted for four weeks - but then she refused to walk because her legs hurt. After weeks of trips to the doctors and A&E, her parents were sat down in a room at Archway's Whittington Hospital and given the news that would turn their lives upside down. Bibi had a lump that doctors suspected was childhood cancer.
Intensive chemotherapy began at Great Ormond Street Hospital the next day. Since then Beatriz has been in hospital for nearly half the past year, spending both her birthday and Christmas there.
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Beatriz's family are now raising hundreds of thousands of pounds for further treatment through the specialist neuroblastoma charity Solving Kids' Cancer. The goal is to either get Bibi into remission or to keep the cancer away if treatment does go to plan.
"Having Solving Kids' Cancer to help us is comforting," said Bibi's mother Laura.
"They are an amazing charity who help families throughout treatment and beyond, and endlessly push for more research into this disease. Any money we don't use will be used for research - to help other children. And that's important to us."
She continued: "Bibi is weird, wonderful and amazing - she wants to be the tooth fairy when she grows up. And she is genuinely one of the funniest people we know."
Beatriz is currently enrolled in a six-month clinical trial at GOSH, as she has relapsed neuroblastoma.
The trial, jointly funded by Solving Kids' Cancer and Imagine for Margo, is the first study in Europe to combine chemotherapy with anti-GD2 antibody therapy.
To donate see justgiving.com/campaign/beatriz.