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Brave Ellie-Mae aiming for gold after transplant saves her life

A little girl who had a complete liver transplant shortly after her first birthday is looking for sponsors so she can take part in a special sporting contest. Ellie-Mae Wolfenden, who is now three, was diagnosed with stage four hepatoblastoma when she was just nine months old.

A little girl who had a complete liver transplant shortly after her first birthday is looking for sponsors so she can take part in a special sporting contest.

Ellie-Mae Wolfenden, who is now three, was diagnosed with stage four hepatoblastoma – a cancer which affects one in 1.5 million children each year – when she was just nine months old.

She had chemotherapy to destroy cancerous tumours in her lungs and after two months on a waiting list, was given part of a liver from a 37-year-old man who had died.

Now she is hoping to take part in the British Transplant Games in Kent to encourage more people to become organ donors.

Mum Karen, 38, of Beech Farm Drive, Tytherington, said: “Organ donation is something you don’t really think about until you need it.

“Ellie-Mae was rushed to the top of the list because she had cancer in all four lobes of her liver.

“She had part of a liver from a 37-year-old man, which will now grow with her. Without the donor I dread to think what would have happened.”

Ellie-Mae, who must take immune-suppressant drugs for the rest of her life, was treated at St James’ Hospital, Leeds.

She needs to find £300 sponsorship to join fellow patients at the games in August.

The aim is to raise awareness, encourage transplant patients of all ages to regain fitness and give them a chance to meet other patients.

Mum Karen, who lives with her husband Carl and their 16-year-old daughter Collette, added: “We’re hoping someone, or a local business, can sponsor her so she can go.

“It would be really nice for her to take part because it will be fun day and she can meet kids who have gone through a similar thing.

“She was behind on crawling and walking because she’d spent six months in a cot, but now she’s fine and she loves running around.”

She added: “This is what we want to highlight – the fact that we do need more donors and that people with transplants can go on to live normal lives.”

If you can support Ellie-Mae call her mum Karen on 01625 618394.

 

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