Girl Recovers From Bone Marrow Transplant After Dyskeratosis Congenita Diagnosis

August 11, 2015

The countdown has begun for little Gabrielle Stephens who has arrived in Auckland to start chemotherapy and a bone marrow transplant to treat her rare, life-threatening disease.

Since January, when it was confirmed 5-year-old Gabrielle had been diagnosed with a rare, life-threatening disease, the Nelson family have been waiting to learn when she could start treatment.

Last Wednesday, the whole family flew to Auckland to start Gabrielle’s chemotherapy and bone marrow transplant at Starship Children’s Hospital.

The family found out earlier this year that Gabrielle had dyskeratosis congenita and aplastic anaemia which leaves sufferers vulnerable to disorders that impair bone marrow function and at high risk of developing various cancers. She is only the third recorded case of dyskeratosis congenita in New Zealand, with all coming from Nelson.

They will be gone for a minimum of four months.

Gabrielle has already begun chemotherapy and now the Stephens family are waiting until next Wednesday when she and her older brother Lachlan will undergo a bone marrow transplant.

Gabrielle’s mother Megan said it had been a “mixed bag” since her daughter began chemotherapy.

On Tuesday Gabrielle woke up in a very good mood.

“She was bright and bubbly and full of chatter.”

Learn more about Gabrielle’s recovery at the source.

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