THOUSANDS of supporters are backing tiny fighter Bradley Lowery as he continues to battle a deadly form of cancer.
The two-year-old is suffering from the aggressive form of childhood cancer neuroblastoma and has tumours in his chest, lungs, kidney, lymph nodes and bone marrow.
In the last few days he has developed veno occlusive disease in his liver after intense chemotherapy at the RVI hospital in Newcastle, which caused his body to retain water.
Two operations drained 500mls of fluid from his liver, and he is being given oxygen to help him breathe, as well as ketamine and morphine to relieve pain.
Doctors said it would take Bradley four to six weeks to recover from the treatment, but even then his battle won’t be over.
He may suffer a relapse and need treatment which is only available in the United States.
Scores of people have joined in the effort of the Bradley Lowery’s Fight trust to raise £500,000 needed to fund the treatment, and so far have raised about £45,000.
They have also honoured the youngster’s bravery by nominating him for a Pride of Wearside, Child of Courage award.
Mum Gemma, 30, and dad Carl, 30, of Blackhall, have barely left Bradley’s hospital bedside, but have thanked those involved.
Bradley’s grandfather Howard Stonebank, 54, of Blackhall, said the nomination is “amazing”.
“I think it’s absolutely brilliant that he’s been nominated,” he said. “It’s amazing what the community is doing for Bradley and the family.
“What’s happened is devastating, everything is in uproar, but we are keeping strong.”
Once Bradley has recovered from the chemotherapy, doctors have prescribed him further treatment including radiotherapy, and possibly further surgery.
“You don’t realise how bad cancer is until you go to the RVI and actually see the children suffering there,” said Howard.
“Gemma hasn’t left Bradley’s side the last two weeks. They are giving him drugs every 10 minutes. She wants to say thank you to everyone for everything they are doing but there just isn’t enough time.
“But it is absolutely marvellous, and we can’t thank them enough.”