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Donor needed to save tot’s life

PUBLISHED: 14:23 10 April 2008 | UPDATED: 14:38 25 August 2010

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A FAMILY are making a desperate appeal to find a bone-marrow donor to save the life of their six-year-old daughter who has months to live.

A FAMILY are making a desperate appeal to find a bone-marrow donor to save the life of their six-year-old daughter who has months to live.

Rianna Deol, of Lunedale Road, Dartford, was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukaemia (known as ALL) in December 2005.

She spent the following Christmas in Great Ormond Street Hospital and, after two years of gruelling chemotherapy, her family was told the cancer had not been stopped.

Her mother, Ravi, 39, said: "She's in a fragile condition at the moment and desperately needs a bone marrow transplant to help her get through this next challenge.

"We've told her that she has leukaemia but she's only six-years-old and doesn't understand what cancer can do to people. We just tell her we are waiting for someone special to help her."

The family now plans to hold clinics in Dartford, Gravesend and Belvedere to find a suitable donor.

ALL attacks the white blood cells in the bone marrow weakening the immune system. With her condition deteriorating daily doctors have given her just four months to live and her only chance of survival may be to find a bone marrow match for a transplant. Statistically there is a greater chance of finding a match from a relative but tragically neither Mrs Deol, her husband Tony, 38, or her son Josh, 9, are suitable.

The housewife said: "When we found out no one in the family was a match it just made us go cold. It really scared me. We've got medicine and technology that can help but Rianna needs somebody to come forward. It's the last chance."

The next best match is someone from the same ethnic group but a search of the Anthony Nolan Trust's bone marrow register failed, largely due to the lack of people from Asian backgrounds listed.

She added: "They can save Rianna's life or the life of another person. It just takes a few minutes and what could be more wonderful than to save a life?"

While doctors are especially eager to hear from Asian people donors from all backgrounds are welcome to add to the register.

The clinics are due to be held at The Arts Studio, Khalsa Avenue, Gravesend, from 10am to 2pm this Saturday, at Dartford Gurdwara, Highfields Road, Dartford, from 10am to 2pm this Sunday and at Erith Gurdwara, Mitchell Close, Belvedere, from 5pm to 8pm on Monday.

- For more information on the bone marrow register visit www.anthonynolan.org.uk

jason.goodyer@archant.co.uk

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