Cancer-stricken toddler's family launch fundraising drive

Kia Musgrove was diagnosed with a rare and aggressive form of cancer that could be treated with pioneering US treatment

Simon Greener Katherine Musgrove and partner Sam Gordon with daughter Katie
Katherine Musgrove and partner Sam Gordon with daughter Katie

The family of a toddler diagnosed with a rare and aggressive strand of cancer have launched a £250,000 fundraising drive.

Kian Musgrove underwent a painful hip biopsy to discover he is suffering from neuroblastoma – an illness which affects just 100 children in the UK each year. The youngster is now receiving blood transfusions and high-dose chemotherapy but his chances of survival are as low as 40%.

Medics have told his family he could spend up to two years in hospital as he undergoes treatment. If the chemotherapy fails and he relapses, pioneering treatment in the US could boost his bid to overcome the disease to 70%.

Now his family has launched a bid to raise £250,000 that could send him across the Atlantic for the potentially lifesaving treatment. His mother, Kat, said the cash would help secure vital treatment if an initial course of treatment fails and he relapses.

Kat, 25, who lives in Newbiggin Hall, Newcastle, with her fiance Sam Gordon, 26, and daughter, Katie, three, said: “I just keep thinking the worse. It’s a 50/50 chance of him surviving – if an adult had the same cancer the doctors say they wouldn’t have treated it – and there’s an 80% chance of relapse.

“His illness is in the back of my mind every single day. I look at him and I see him lying there and know how hard he’s fighting.”

Kian first went to the doctors at the start of September in Turkey after his parents noticed he was unsteady on his feet and he was suffering from fatigue. But – after the doctors prescribed painkillers – he made five trips to medics in Newcastle, who were also unable to diagnose his illness.

Specialists said he was suffering from a bug and told him to return in a couple of weeks for a check-up. It was only when Kat rushed her son to a paediatrician on October 31 that they discovered he was suffering from stage four high-risk neuroblastoma.

The illness attacked nerve cells around Kian’s kidneys on an adrenal gland where a tumour had developed. But it has now travelled around his little body and spread to his bones and across his pelvis.

So far the youngster has undergone one course of chemotherapy, but it is still too early to tell if the treatment has had an impact. Kat said: “I’m so proud of him, he’s getting through it so far, but he’s only had one lot of treatment. I know that as the days get on then it’s going to get worse before it gets better, which I’m just dreading because I know he’s got a lot to go through.”

Cash raised will fund Kian’s trip to the US if he relapses and help his family financially. If he doesn’t need the trip to the US the cash will leave a lasting legacy by funding research into neuroblastoma. Anyone wanting to donate can go to www.gofundme.com/53lrmw and pledge their support. To follow Kian’s progress and keep an eye on the fundraising efforts see facebook.com/caringforkian

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