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Monday, October 26, 2009

Grateful Teenage Patient Helps Out RVI Hospital

A Grateful teenager who survived a malignant brain tumour has raised thousands of pounds for a Tyneside hospital unit that offers hope to other young people stricken by cancer.
Fifteen-year-old Charlotte Lee was determined to repay medical staff for the life-saving treatment and care she received after being diagnosed with a medulloblastoma – an aggressive form of brain cancer.

Now she has raised a magnificent £8,500 for the children’s cancer ward at Newcastle’s Royal Victoria Infirmary – and vital research into medulloblastoma – by holding a charity auction night.

Dozens of people attended the event at The Badger pub near Ponteland, Northumberland, which included more than 100 auction lots and a £2,000 donation from Northern Rock. The result has delighted Charlotte – known as Charliie to her family and friends – who lives in Ponteland with her parents Joan and Kevin, and younger sisters Jessica and Stephanie.

Last night she said: “It is amazing to have raised £8,500 for the two charities because I thought I might raise a couple of hundred pounds at the most. The night went really, really well and I could not believe how many people turned up.

“I am very grateful to everyone who donated things to the auction and for the help I got from friends and family. Someone did the Great North Run and raised about £800 and another person donated £1,000.

“I handed the money over to my consultant at the RVI and he was over the moon. I really hope it will do a lot of good for the cancer ward and for research into medulloblastoma.”

Charlotte began having severe headaches, dizzy spells and vomiting episodes in 2007, but doctors put the problems down to hormonal issues or a virus. Her parents were not happy, and after several visits to the GPs’ surgery, they said they would like a second opinion.

The following morning – in August 2007 – Charlotte was again sick and in pain so they took her immediately to the accident and emergency department at Newcastle General Hospital. An MRI scan revealed she had a medulloblastoma, and within 24 hours she was operated on to remove it.

Charlotte, a student at Ponteland High School, underwent months of radiotherapy and chemotherapy before a follow-up scan last November gave her the all-clear. The charity auction night included lots such as golf days, hairdressing sessions and restaurant vouchers, many of them donated by local businesses.

She added: “The hospital staff were lovely and really helpful during my treatment and I am so grateful for what they did. I wanted to raise funds for them and my mum suggested an auction evening.

Source: Journal Live