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Tot's cancer courage.com

Bearing up ... brave Samantha beams with teddy after losing hair through chemotherapy



A TWO-YEAR-OLD girl’s cancer battle is inspiring thousands — after her dad began writing her thoughts on an internet diary.

Nearly 11,000 web users have been gripped by brave Samantha Hughes’s fight against a rare and deadly cancer called a neuroblastoma.

Now, after four months, delighted doctors say her six-inch tumour has shrunk by half — and she should soon be ready to have an operation to remove it.

Samantha’s web-log, known as a blog, tells readers she has been hit by “this nasty disease” and has had to go to hospital.

She writes: “Mummy and Daddy tell me I’m a very brave little girl.

“I like to keep everyone smiling and made everyone laugh when I said, ‘Mummy, am I allowed to jump up and down on this bed?’”

Her blog begins last September, when she first fell ill with the disease, which affects fewer than 100 children in the UK each year.

Her first entry explains: “I have lost my appetite. The only things I fancy are yoghurt and milk.

“Mummy and Daddy are going to take me to the doctor to see whether I am poorly.”

Net asset ... website has inspired 11,000 visitors

Samantha, of Heanor, Derbys, had a gruelling series of X-rays, CT scans, bone-marrow tests and biopsies. They revealed her cancer of the nerve cells, which causes a tumour in the adrenal gland.

On October 21 she writes: “Although I look well, it appears that under a microscope it’s a different story — which upset Mummy and Daddy. But we all have a positive attitude and will beat it together.”

On November 4, she adds: “I have been fed through a tube, had no sleep and am on five different medicines. But guess what? I’m still smiling.”

Samantha, who is having chemotherapy at Nottingham’s Queen’s Medical Centre, needs a blood transfusion every day to improve her blood count.

Parents Neil and Tina, 36 — whose son Louis, five, beat lung cancer as a baby — say it is her courage which has caught the imagination of internet users.

Systems analyst Neil, 32, said: “Samantha never loses her beautiful smile, no matter what. She may be only two, but we’ve all learned from her.

“Nothing seems to knock her spirit, and the way she’s dealt with this has helped us cope.

“We like to think people all over the country are inspired.”

Samantha’s latest entry, on January 9, is typical of her fighting spirit. It reads: “I stayed up until 23:30 and was singing and laughing, but kept waking in the night very teary and was quite poorly. It’s time for round 8 of my chemo, which is my final course. Yippee! Chemotherapy knocks it out of you, but I always manage a smile and a song.”

Samantha’s diary is on www.samanthahughes.info/index.htm

To read this you might have to cut paste, But WWWOOOOWWWWW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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