Update: Norfolk teenager Deryn Blackwell’s anxious wait after bone marrow transplant
15:59 02 March 2013
A brave Watton teenager fighting one of the rarest types of cancer in the world now faces an anxious three-week wait to see if a bone marrow transplant has worked.
Deryn Blackwell displayed his much-admired bravery and optimism on Friday night as he underwent the transplant that could save his life. He now has a wait to see if the bone marrow, flown in from Germany just hours before the procedure, will successfully graft.
His father Simon said: “It’s a strange feeling because we had all this build- up and then you have this fairly innocuous-looking, strawberry-coloured liquid going into your son’s chest.”
Deryn’s family have been sending live messages, photos and even video of how the procedure is going, including one of him dancing in bed with his mum to Queen’s ‘Don’t Stop Me Now’ as he receives his new bone marrow.
Messages tonight from the Twitter account @_DoEveRYthiNg, include: “20 minutes until transplant! Piriton, pethadine, paracetamol and fluids going in pre-transplant x”;
“It’s here and going in :) Now the hard times really do start - please keep supporting”; and
“It’s going to get much harder before it starts to get easier and that’s ‘if’ it works”.
Deryn was diagnosed with leukaemia aged 10, and the Wayland Academy student was then told two years into his treatment that he had relapsed, and had also developed Langerhans Cell Sarcoma – one of only six cases in the world.
The 13-year-old is thought to be the only person to have both cancers at the same time, and his bravery has captured the hearts of people up and down the country, including celebrities.
The number of supporters following updates on his progress from his Twitter account @_DoEveRYthiNg has rocketed from fewer than 500 on Wednesday to nearly 2,400 this evening.
Messages have come in from rugby player Brian Moore, actress Brooke Kinsella and Only Fools and Horses star John Challis, who tweeted in character as Boycie “A’right Deryn, young man? Marlene sends you a big kiss. Yuck. For Gawd’s sake woman...”
Today’s transplant uses material from a young donor in Germany, and Deryn does not expect to know whether it has successfully grafted for three weeks.
Follow Deryn at @_DoEveRYthiNg