By ISABELLE MCKENZIE
Ryder was having nose bleeds for a year and a half before we went to the Royal Children’s Hospital in Melbourne. Every doctor turned us away saying that he must have been picking nose!
I knew it couldn’t be that straight forward — his nose had been bleeding daily.
The doctors would blame his age, say it happens to every child and that it was nothing to worry about. My motherly instinct told me that that they were wrong. In December Ryder passed out and he wouldn’t wake up. I knew something was seriously wrong. My baby boy had been suffering.
Frantically I took him to the Royal Children’s Hospital Melbourne and straight away they knew something was wrong. How could all of the Doctors I had seen over the last year and a half have missed this?
Ryder had his first blood transfusion and was admitted into the hospital for two weeks before being sent home. In December last year we where told Ryder had Acute Myeloid Leukaemia (AML)
What is it ?
Acute myeloid leukaemia (AML) is a type of cancer that affects the blood and bone marrow. AML is characterised by an overproduction of immature white blood cells, called myeloblasts or leukaemic blasts. These cells crowd the bone marrow, preventing it from making normal blood cells. They can also spill out into the blood stream and circulate around the body. Due to their immaturity, they are unable to function properly to prevent or fight infection. Inadequate numbers of red cells and platelets being made by the marrow cause anaemia, and easy bleeding and/or bruising.
Acute myeloid leukaemia is sometimes called acute myelocytic, myelogenous or granulocytic leukaemia.