SITTING at her son’s bedside, Lynzie Cook is desperately praying little Leighton can beat deadly neuroblastoma as he undergoes revolutionary treatment.
The youngster today celebrates his fourth birthday, as he continues his brave battle against the life-threatening cancer.
Leighton, of Tunstall Village, has been receiving immune therapy for the disease at Newcastle’s Royal Victoria Infirmary (RVI) as doctors try to improve his condition.
Lynzie, 34, who is living at the RVI while Leighton undergoes treatment, said: “It’s been absolutely terrible to watch.
“He seems to have had every side effect going and the last four months have been very tough.
“As a family we are hoping the scans he will have in July go to plan and all the treatment will be worth it.”
It is hoped that the immune therapy Leighton is receiving will increase his chances of beating the illness. The treatment attempts to stimulate the immune system to reject and destroy tumours.
Although Leighton’s hair has grown back now that his chemotherapy is over, due to the drugs he is being given daily, he has experienced swelling of his face and throat.
“We are just hopeful and keeping our fingers crossed for him,” added Lynzie.
Dad Dave, 54, an electrical engineer, and sister Taylor, 13, as well as brothers, Grant, 12, Kieron, eight and Ethan, six, have all rallied round Leighton since his diagnosis, to keep his spirits up.
He was due to be back at home today with his loving family to celebrate his birthday.
Following Leighton’s diagnosis almost a year ago, the Cooks, of Merryweather Rise, set a £50,000 target to pay for pioneering stem cell treatment, which he will most likely need in the autumn.
To date, they have raised over £16,000, still well short of the target.