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I Received Blood
Eight-year-old Quinn Hautapu from Palmerston North is a true Belieber (Justin Bieber fan) and is in remission after being treated for a very rare brain tumour.
In January 2013, Quinn complained of a sore arm after falling off a scooter. After parents Roanne and Jamie took her to their GP, it was discovered that Quinn had a brain bleed and she developed complete paralysis down her right side.
She was flown immediately to Starship Children’s Hospital in Auckland and was diagnosed with Primitive Neuroectodermal Tumour, a rare type of cancerous brain tumour – so rare in fact, that on average only one person per year in New Zealand is diagnosed with it.
Quinn and her family relocated to Auckland, where she was treated with high-dose radiotherapy, high dose chemotherapy cycles and a bone marrow transplant. She also received countless blood and platelet transfusions to help boost her haemoglobin levels and immune system. With all the procedures she’s been through, she’s definitely not afraid of needles.
“Quinn was always so excited before receiving a transfusion, as she knew she’d feel so much better after receiving one. They gave her so much more energy- she used to call it her ‘Go-go Juice’!
“It’s really incredible as a parent to see your child given a treatment that’s gifted from a complete stranger, and see your child’s health improve so much after receiving it. It makes you very humbled that people make the effort to donate blood,” says Roanne.
Thankfully now that Quinn’s cancer is in remission, her family has been able to go back to a sense of normality – they’ve moved back home to Palmerston North (after spending most of 2013 in Auckland) and Quinn is back at Parkland School four half days a week.
“Quinn absolutely loves school, so it’s hard for her only going for a short time, but as her health and energy levels improve, she’ll be able to slowly increase her hours at school.
“Throughout her treatment, she had this incredible strength and happy nature. Quinn and blood donors are such an inspiration,” says Roanne.
To find out more about how to become a blood donor to help save lives, click here or call 0800 GIVE BLOOD.
“Thanks to blood donors, Quinn is able to fight against cancer and be a child ambassador for the Child Cancer Foundation. Every time cancer kids like Quinn have a blood transfusion they get a red Bead of Courage® from the Child Cancer Foundation through the Beads of Courage® programme. Quinn has about 20.”
Beads of Courage® is a United States federally registered trademark of Beads of Courage®, Inc., and is used under license.
Photo credit: Thanks to Sam Mothersole Photography
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