Archie was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukaemia (ALL) in June 2020 when he was just three years old. His parents had noticed his colour was off, and that the lymph nodes on the back of his head were inflamed.
Archie is currently enrolled in a clinical trial and is receiving ongoing treatment for leukaemia at Queensland Children’s Hospital, undergoing chemotherapy and countless procedures including lumbar punctures.
Thankfully, he is now in the maintenance phase of his treatment, which includes daily oral chemotherapy, which will take him through to the end of his treatment in August 2022.
Archie has a twin brother, Marty, and it has been incredibly difficult for them to be separated during Archie’s treatment. The first two weeks in hospital were the hardest, especially as Archie’s dad’s side of the family are all the way across the world in Ireland. This was made even more difficult by international travel bans in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Sixty kids in Queensland are diagnosed with leukaemia each year, and treatment is intensive and is associated with extended hospital stays and chronic side effects.
The Foundation are helping researchers understand why some leukaemia cells survive chemotherapy and helping them to find ways to make those cells weaker, as well as understanding why chemotherapy can harm healthy cells too.
One of these projects that the Foundation’s generous donors are funding includes Associate Professor Kristen Radford’s team, which is looking to alleviate the negative effects that chemotherapy has on children with leukaemia through her latest research project. Her research has already uncovered findings that have exciting potential to lessen chemo side effects in children just like Archie, enabling them to get better and go home sooner.
Throughout Archie’s journey, Children’s Hospital Foundation was integral in giving the family support during their time in hospital, especially as Archie was having separation anxiety from Marty. Visiting Kidzone, along with the craft activities and being gifted tickets to experiences made a huge difference to their long stays in hospital. Archie has also been collecting Bravery Beads during his treatment.