Kerry F
Posted by

Being told your 7 month old baby has leukaemia

Kerry F
Posted by
26 Aug 2016

Rebecca was diagnosed with acute myeloid leukaemia at 7 months old after several weeks of visits to our GP.


She spiked temperatures a few times of 39-42oC and was just not her happy wee self.  There was no bruising or bleeding just symptoms that coincided with a 7 month old baby teething and their mummy going back to work.  Every time I gave her paracetamol, as directed by the GP, she perked up and was ok again for a few hours.  I eventually saw another GP who sent us to the hospital but even they said they were only going to take bloods off her to "appease the mum"!



The bloods came back with high infection markers and she underwent a lumbar puncture in case it was meningitis.  This came back negative and they started Rebecca on antibiotics to try and clear the infection.  As her infection blood markers were decreasing so were her red blood cell count, platelets and white blood cells.  At this point we were transferred to an oncology children's hospital but again the nurses told us that she was too well to have leukaemia when I asked them if that's what the Drs thought was wrong.  Rebecca then had a bone marrow aspirate which came back with a leukaemia diagnosis and we waited 24 hrs to be told what type of leukaemia it was. 


Rebecca was in hospital for 7 months including her first birthday.  She had 5 blocks of chemo which meant us going into strict isolation and numerous blood and platelet infusions.  We also found out that it was in fact her forearm that was infected and that was why her infection markers had been raised.  The orthopaedic consultant that came to see her that day about her arm asked me if she was my first & only child and then said "this is such a shame".  I cried for about 4 hrs after he visited.

Rebecca is now nearly 10 and had been involved with Bloodwise since she was a baby.  She does dancing, is part of a theatre group and is nearly a black belt in Tae Kwon Do.

Read more about childhood AML

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Eleanor Baggley

Thank you for sharing this Kerry. I'm so sorry to hear about all you've been through and the difficulties you faced getting a diagnosis. It's fantastic to see that Rebecca is doing so well after all that's happened! If there's ever anything we can do to support you, please do not hesitate to get in touch. All the best, Eleanor