Two weeks before her 8th birthday this year Hayleigh was diagnosed with Fanconi Anemia. It’s a rare genetic disorder that leads to bone marrow failure and Hayleigh will always have it unless a cure is found to fix the faulty genes. As a result of the Fanconi Anemia, she suffers from a blood disorder called Aplastic Anemia and was in bone marrow failure by the time she was diagnosed. A bone marrow transplant will cure the blood disorder, but Fanconi Anemia puts Hayleigh at a higher risk of any future cancers so, for early detection, she has to undergo continuous cancer screenings for various types of cancers for the rest of her life. You can visit fanconi.org for more information.
Hayleigh and her mom and dad went to Cape Town in March this year to meet her transplant doctor and are now back in Cape Town for the bone marrow transplant. The procedure begins with a number of safety tests and once the results are in, Hayleigh will be placed in isolation for 4 to 5 weeks during which time she’ll undergo chemo therapy to kill the existing bone marrow and then receive her bone marrow transplant. As the chemo will cause her to lose her hair, Hayleigh has bravely donated about 25cm of it to CANSA.
Hayleigh and her mom will be in Cape Town for 4 to 5 months while her 2-year-old baby sister, who thankfully doesn’t have the same genetic condition, stays in East London with her dad. Her dad will join them in Cape Town for 2 weeks and then come back to East London to take care of the little one and will visit occasionally during the time they are there.
The family would like to thank everyone for their continued support, prayers and donations. Without any of this, they would not have been able to tackle the huge challenge they are facing.
If you would like to follow Hayleigh’s progress please visit her Facebook page.