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Brave Sunderland boy battles on through Christmas despite gruelling chemo treatment

Joshua Thompson, of Portman Square, Pennywell, Sunderland, who is having chemotherapy after twice being diagnosed with a life threatening illness.

Joshua Thompson, of Portman Square, Pennywell, Sunderland, who is having chemotherapy after twice being diagnosed with a life threatening illness.

BATTLING Joshua Thompson is making the most of his Christmas despite battling a life-threatening condition.

The five-year-old schoolboy has had his chemotherapy treatment increased after returning to hospital on Christmas Eve as he fights to overcome an immune disorder that is attacking his body.

Mum Lynsey Thompson, 36, said: “We were back in hospital on Monday and they decided to boost the treatment.

“We will go back in the New Year when they will reassess and see what else needs to be done.”

The Thompson family, from Pennywell, have made the most of their Christmas despite the setback.

Lynsey added: “It’s been hectic and busy but he’s managed to enjoy himself as much as possible.”

The Academy 360 pupil was just three years old when signs of the disease, thought to affect just one in 200,000 children, first started to appear.

Mum-of-five Lynsey said her son first developed a lump on the back of his neck and it didn’t seem to be going away.

After it started to change shape, tests were carried out for things like TB but nothing was found.

A biopsy followed and medics then diagnosed Joshua with Langerhans cell histiocytosis (LCH), which causes tumours in the body, as well as damage to organs.

In January 2011, the schoolboy began nine months of chemotherapy treatment which left him exhausted.

Hopes were high when, later that year, doctors said the youngster had gone into remission and was on the road to recovery.

But in October last year, Joshua started developing more problems and another biopsy revealed the condition had returned and more chemotherapy would be needed.

Lynsey added: “He had been going to Newcastle’s Royal Victoria Infirmary every three weeks but they’ve now increased that to once a week.

“It is now a case of waiting until the New Year when we find out what the next steps going to be.”

Despite it all, Joshua has made the most of Christmas with his family, including sisters Jaime, 19, Chloe, 14, Bethany, 13, and Kayleigh, 12.

“He’s taking steroids so he’s quite hyper at the minute. He’s been going around shooting everyone with the Nerf gun he got for Christmas.”

Earlier this year, the family attended St James’s Park for the annual Braveheart awards which recognises children of courage from across the North East.

Joshua was presented with a laptop computer during the ceremony.

 

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