A four-year-old woman with a uncommon most cancers that impacts simply 100 kids within the UK yearly is hoping to journey to New York for a pioneering vaccine to cut back the chance of the recurrence. 

Florentina Burton, from Braintree, Essex, was recognized with neuroblastoma – a most cancers that develops from specialised nerve cells – in Could final yr, after docs discovered a tumour on her kidney. 

With dad and mom Amelia and Kevin by her facet, Florentina has undergone months of therapy at Nice Ormond Road Hospital, in London, and is now as a consequence of have radiotherapy and immunotherapy. It’s hoped her therapy will finish in September.

Florentina Burton (pictured), from Braintree, Essex, was diagnosed with neuroblastoma on May 21 last year, days before her birthday, after doctors found a tumour on her kidney

Florentina Burton (pictured), from Braintree, Essex, was recognized with neuroblastoma on Could 21 final yr, days earlier than her birthday, after docs discovered a tumour on her kidney

The family are raising money for her to get the bivalent vaccine as when Florentina was diagnosed they were told she would have treatment for 14 to 18 months but the cancer has a high relapse rate. Pictured: Florentina with her parents Amelia and Kevin

The household are elevating cash for her to get the bivalent vaccine as when Florentina was recognized they have been advised she would have therapy for 14 to 18 months however the most cancers has a excessive relapse price. Pictured: Florentina along with her dad and mom Amelia and Kevin

Nevertheless the most cancers has a excessive relapse price. 

To scale back this, the household are hoping to pay £250,000 to fly Florentina to New York for the bivalent vaccine, which isn’t out there on the NHS.

The vaccine works by stimulating an immune response towards two totally different antigens, resembling two totally different viruses or different microorganisms. It’s hoped this may reduce the chance of the most cancers coming again.  

Grandmother Donna Marino mentioned: ‘Florentina may be very strong-willed. She has a preventing spirit.

‘She is so decided and has come by way of issues higher than anticipated. She is aware of what she desires, even at this age. That has actually helped her by way of the therapy.’

Donna defined Florentina was recognized after falling ‘actually ailing’ on round Could 20, days earlier than her birthday. 

‘A month previous to that she was a bit below the climate,’ Donna continued.

Despite having the gruelling treatment, Florentina is able to dote on her baby sister (pictured) who was born in August and plays with her whenever she can

Regardless of having the gruelling therapy, Florentina is ready to dote on her child sister (pictured) who was born in August and performs along with her every time she will

Pictured: Florentina smiles while in hospital

Pictured: Florentina in a sparkly princess dress

There have been fundraising occasions for Florentina (pictured left and proper) together with a Christmas ball which raised £10,000, a web based public sale and a meet and greet

The family have also been sharing her journey with neuroblastoma via their social media pages Florentina's Footsteps and @florentinafootsteps. Pictured: Florentina in hospital

The household have additionally been sharing her journey with neuroblastoma through their social media pages Florentina’s Footsteps and @florentinafootsteps. Pictured: Florentina in hospital

‘She was not likely that excited by doing too many issues. Then about three weeks earlier than the prognosis she was up within the night time, chilly and shivering. She didn’t wish to eat. We thought she had picked up one thing.’

What’s neuroblastoma? 

Neuroblastoma is a uncommon kind of most cancers that principally impacts infants and younger kids.

It impacts round 100 kids annually within the UK and is most typical in kids below the age of 5.

The trigger is unknown. There are very uncommon instances the place kids in the identical household are affected, however typically neuroblastoma doesn’t run in households.

Signs can embody:

a swollen, painful tummy, typically with constipation and issue peeing

breathlessness and issue swallowing a lump within the neck

blueish lumps within the pores and skin and bruising, notably across the eyes

weak spot within the legs and an unsteady stroll, with numbness within the decrease physique, constipation and issue peeing

fatigue, lack of vitality, pale pores and skin, lack of urge for food and weight reduction

bone ache, a limp and basic irritability

not often, jerky eye and muscle actions

Supply: NHS

 

Weeks handed and Florentina’s situation deteriorated a lot, her mom Amelia determined to take her to hospital.

Ms Marino and Florentina’s mom and father had observed that Florentina was shedding weight and had a distended abdomen.

Docs sought a second opinion from Nice Ormond Road, the place she was instantly transferred to the most cancers unit. 

On the time Amelia was pregnant along with her second daughter. 

Ms Marino continued: ‘My daughter [Amelia] was in there on her personal. She didn’t have a companion and she or he was pregnant. It was simply terrible, actually terrible.’

Florentina had chemotherapy, scans and blood transfusions. On the finish of August final yr, docs eliminated the grapefruit-sized tumour as soon as it had shrunk sufficient.

That very same month Amelia and Kevin, who’re documenting Florentina’s journey on Fb and Instagram, welcomed a child woman.

Regardless of having the gruelling therapy, Florentina is ready to dote on her child sister and performs along with her every time she will.   

Ms Marino mentioned: ‘She completely adores her. When she is round her she desires to do the Mummy factor. It has been a extremely good factor.’ 

Florentina, who additionally loves horses and has two Shetland ponies at her grandmother’s home, will should be in remission for a month earlier than she is ready to journey to New York for the vaccine. The household has raised about half of the £250,000 goal. 

There have been fundraising occasions for Florentina together with a Christmas ball which raised £10,000, a web based public sale and a meet and greet.

Ms Marino mentioned that fundraising occasions and elevating consciousness will proceed in order that the household can struggle for Florentina and different kids and households in comparable conditions.

It’s hoped that ultimately the bivalent vaccine might be dropped at the UK and can assist scores of youngsters with the uncommon most cancers.

The 4-year-old smiles with one of her Shetland ponies

It is hoped that eventually the bivalent vaccine will be brought to the UK and can help scores of children with the rare cancer

Florentina additionally loves horses (left) and has two Shetland ponies at her grandmother’s home

To donate to the fundraising enchantment for Florentina click on right here