Georgia’s mum Zoe started to worry when she noticed her newborn girl’s legs looked a bit different. She went to her doctor to get it checked out — and it turned out little Georgia already had three Wilms tumours growing in her body.
One of her legs was slightly fattier, a little bit chubbier than the other one. We noticed it when she was around two months old and brought her to the doctor. They said it could be hip dysplasia or something.
We didn’t get the referral until nearly August and, because it was my first child, I thought maybe you have to be a certain age to see if it goes into place. Everything was normal, she was a normal child and crawling on time.
FIRST CHEMO DAY BEFORE FIRST BIRTHDAY
Doctors carried out X-rays and found there was an overgrowth.
Zoe said: “So they did an ultrasound on her stomach and there were three tumours already growing on her kidneys. They weren’t that big, about 6cm, but some kids don’t find out until they’re a lot bigger when they can feel them on the outside. But you wouldn’t have known from looking at her. Imagine she could have still had it now and we wouldn’t have known if we had have just left the leg. The next day she was fitted with a line into her chest so they could put the chemo in and it started the day after that” — so the day before her first birthday she had her first chemo.
Zoe started researching where Georgia could get specialist care and found Dr Davidoff of St Jude’s Hospital in Memphis, US, who said he could operate on her.
Zoe said: He looked at her images and agreed to do it — but just when we were about to go, the coronavirus came and they had to cancel it.
Then all the flights to America were cancelled so we wouldn’t have been able to get home if we had gone. It was heartbreaking because. . . it was all set, ready to go and then it was back to square one. Then I found a specialist in Great Ormond Street in London, Dr Imran Mushtaq.
As soon as they gave us a date, we were on the flight the next day. The Gavin Glynn Foundation actually rang me and said the hospital had contacted them and said we were going to have to go, and within an hour they had the flights and accommodation booked for us.
It took a lot of the stress off for him to organise that and get everything ready to go. He was great. They had a man to meet us at the airport in London and he brought us to the accommodation.
Georgia had her surgery on Friday and the team were able to keep 70 per cent of each kidney. She is now recovering and her tumours have been sent for biopsies. She’ll be able to return home soon to get a next round of chemo at Dublin’s Crumlin Hospital.