NHS video shows signs and symptoms of leukaemia
A four-year-old boy has been diagnosed with a cancer never seen anywhere else in the world. Football-loving Arthur Salters-Hoult, from Wallsend, was taken to A&E after lumps appeared on his head and throat. Doctors then revealed he had acute lymphoblastic leukaemia.
His dad, Ricky Hoult, 30, explained how the first symptoms appeared.
He told Chronicle Live: “Last November we noticed a lump on his head, a little small one, and then it was getting bigger and the GP said it was a cyst and would go away.
“Then it got bigger and bigger and then he started getting one on his neck. We were told it was his lymph nodes.
“We kept going to A&E because Arthur wasn’t well and on the fourth visit we saw a consultant and within 90 minutes he had been diagnosed [with] leukaemia.”
Following additional tests doctors at the Royal Victoria Infirmary in Newcastle discovered that Arthur had a chromosome mutation.
He is now being treated with an intensive form of chemotherapy and it is thought he could need a bone marrow transplant in the future.
“He underwent more tests and it took five weeks for the results to come back and that was because they hadn’t seen the mutation before,” Ricky said.
“The best scientists in the world are working on Arthur’s case so he can get the best treatment possible.
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“But the mutation means there is a much higher chance of relapsing at any time and it also puts him at risk of needing a bone marrow transplant.
“What we are trying to do is raise the profile of bone marrow transplants and encourage as many people as possible to join the register.”
Newcastle United fan Arthur was gifted a shirt from the club with the words, ‘You can beat this Arthur’ on the back.
Ricky and Arthur’s mum Helen are hoping the shirt can be used to encourage people to join the bone marrow transplant register.
“We are both Newcastle fans and Arthur loves the club and singing the songs. He has been watching all the matches from his hospital bed,” Ricky said.
“Because he loves football we are trying to get as many teams as possible to be photographed with the Newcastle United shirt saying, ‘You can beat this Arthur’ to raise awareness about bone marrow transplants.
He added: “Arthur is so courageous, brave, funny, loveable, clever and very inquisitive.
“He has shown us all amazing strength and lives each day to the full and is ready to take on new challenges that present daily given the nature of his condition.”
Ricky has also launched a fundraising appeal for Leukaemia UK in honour of his son.
According to the NHS, acute lymphoblastic leukaemia is a type of cancer that affects white blood cells.
“It progresses quickly and aggressively and requires immediate treatment,” the health body warns.
Symptoms can include:
- Pale skin
- Feeling tired and breathless
- Repeated infections over a short time
- Unusual and frequent bleeding, such as bleeding gums or nosebleeds
- High temperature
- Night sweats
- Bone and joint pain
- Easily bruised skin
- Swollen lymph nodes (glands)
- Abdominal pain – caused by a swollen liver or spleen
- Unintentional weight loss
- A purple skin rash (purpura)
- Seizures or fits
- Being sick
- Blurred vision
If you experience any symptoms of leukaemia you should speak to your GP.
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