Our brave little fighter

BEING on an emotional roller-coaster is how mum Brodie describes her baby being diagnosed with a brain tumour.

With the odds at a million to one, her daughter Felicity has the extremely rare childhood craniopharyngioma.

�It began with her eyesight; we noticed she had a lazy eye develop last October,� Brodie said.

�The doctor told us to take her to a paediatrician, but he didn�t consider it urgent as it was a lazy eye.�

Things seemed OK when the condition went away during Christmas.

But then it returned and Felicity began crawling into objects.

�It was like that on and off until on Australia Day we saw her eyes rapidly moving without focusing. �This isn�t normal�, I said, so we got her eyes checked,� Brodie said.

Taking her to the doctors, they discovered Felicity eyes were not reacting to light, so she was transferred by ambulance to Princess Margaret Hospital.

After tests, neurosurgeons found what they thought to be three tumours, with one having wrapped itself around blood vessels.

Within a week, the little baby underwent almost seven hours of surgery to remove the tumours.

�It turned out to be one tumour that had characteristics of three different tumours,� she said.

Felicity�s vision was compromised during the operation and her troubles did not end there.

The tumour had played havoc with her adrenal glands, causing her to have no stress hormones.

�If she has a minor illness, she becomes very, very ill so needs constant hormone therapy,� Brodie said.

�It�s been quite new to us � it is so rare, only a few babies in the world share her condition, she is the first baby in WA to have it.

�It�s hard to know what will happen next. She has hip dysplasia as well.

�You have your days where you�ve had enough � you think �you poor little kid�, you just want her to have a break.

�It puts things into perspective. You think �why me, why me� but then she was the healthiest in the ICU unit at Princess Margaret.�

Choosing to share her daughter�s condition and express gratitude to those who listened have helped Brodie and her family through their ordeal.

�Trust your motherly instinct � if you know it�s not right, trust yourself and fight for it,� she said.

�When it�s a baby, you have to fight for them.

�I just really want to thank the doctors at Peel Health Campus and that one nurse who listened and helped me.

�She is the happiest baby I�ve met though, she woke up laughing after the surgery.

�We are very very lucky.�