Courageous youngster’s special day

For brave Poppy Hughes-Wilson, a life-saving five organ transplant means Christmas Day will be extra special this year.
For brave Poppy Hughes-Wilson, a life-saving five organ transplant means Christmas Day will be extra special this year.
0
Have your say

For brave Poppy Hughes-Wilson, a life-saving five organ transplant means Christmas Day will be extra special this year.

For brave Poppy Hughes-Wilson, a life-saving five organ transplant means Christmas Day will be extra special this year.

After having her small and large bowel, liver, pancreas, and stomach replaced, the plucky seven-year-old is hoping to tuck into her first Christmas dinner surrounded by her family at home.

Poppy, who suffers from the extremely rare Ehler Danlos Syndrome (EDS), genetic pancreatitis and lost her hearing earlier this year, waited 11 months for the transplant.

Her mum Kim Hughes, 32, of Durham Avenue, Cleveleys, said: “Poppy wouldn’t be here without her donor. We are very lucky.

“She got sicker and sicker last year – we had no choice.

“The call for the transplants came at the right time.

“It has given her a complete new life – she says she loves her new life.”

Poppy was diagnosed with EDS – a condition which caused intestinal failure, meaning her bowel and stomach didn’t work properly – when she was 20-months-old and finally had the transplant operation in September.

After spending three months recovering from the seven-and-a-half-hour transplant operation in Kings College Hospital London, she was able to return home.

And although she has been in and out of Blackpool Victoria Hospital for the last couple of weeks and returned to Kings College Hospital London on Thursday due to feeling unwell, it is hoped she will be home today for Christmas.

Kim added: “We are not planning anything for Christmas Day – all I want is for her to feel well.

“She has had to go back on intravenous feeding because she was losing fluids. We think it was down to a stomach bug.

“She has never eaten Christmas dinner before so this will be the first year.

“Hopefully she’ll be able to have a bit of a taste.

“She has been working hard with her eating – learning how to chew and swallow.

“She’ll have a spoonful of mashed potato or mushy peas. She’ll eat a bag of Skips, she loves them!”

And top of Poppy’s Christmas wish list is a couple of Leap Pad games.

She said: “I’d like two more Leap Pad games to fill my case for Christmas.

“And I want to watch Home Alone on Christmas Day.”

If Poppy’s recovery goes well, it is hoped she could return to Northfold Primary School, where her seven-year-old sister Coral attends, in the summer or next September.

Kim added: “She had a rough ride following the transplants with a lot of complications but the EDS shouldn’t affect the new organs.

“She’s got a lot more surgery ahead of her because the muscles in her abdomen need closing but in a few years she will be like a normal child in terms of anatomy.

“I feel more than grateful to the donor and the donor’s family.

“People need to know how important organ donation is.

“There are many children, like Poppy, waiting.

“Once they have the organs it gives them a new lease of life – a life they wouldn’t have without a donor.”