Campaign helped save young Dan
ASIX-YEAR-OLD from Ormskirk appeared on television after he developed a brain tumour the size of an adult’s fist.
Daniel Bell’s parents Rosie and Colin were on BBC One programme Lifeline discussing how a campaign saved their son Daniel’s life.
In June 2014, Daniel had emergency surgery to remove a fist-sized brain tumour after his mum recognised the warning signs on The Brain Tumour Charity’s HeadSmart symptoms card, which a friend had posted on Facebook.
Rosie, 36, said: “We are so grateful to The Brain Tumor Charity – that tiny HeadSmart card saved our little boy’s life.”
Up until the Easter holidays in 2014, Daniel was a typical mischievous, happy three-year-old boy.
But he soon became lethargic, started throwing tantrums and had episodes of vomiting – and one morning he woke up complaining about a headache.
Rosie added: “Suddenly alarm bells started ringing. The HeadSmart card I’d seen on my friend’s Facebook post flashed into my mind – it matched Daniel’s symptoms exactly.”
The worried mother saw a GP who thought it may be hayfever as Daniel had been rubbing his eyes a lot and prescribed antihistamines.
Daniel was sick a few more times over the following few days, however, so she saw another GP who referred her for an urgent scan.
The next morning, Daniel could hardly move and was vomiting, so the couple took him to the children’s A&E at Ormskirk Hospital.
He had a CT scan and they were told he had a “mass” which was causing fluid to build up in his brain; and was blue lighted in an ambulance to Alder Hey children’s hospital.
That afternoon, Daniel had a threehour operation to insert a drain to relieve the pressure on his brain.
An MRI scan revealed he had a brain tumour the size of an adult fist.
Next morning, Daniel had a ninehour operation to remove the growth.
Rosie said: “It seemed like an eternity, but surgery was successful and they managed to remove the whole tumour.”
Daniel was in intensive care for four days and back home just 10 days after his diagnosis.
Biopsy tests showed the tumour was a grade one (non-cancerous) pilocytic astrocytoma.
Rosie and Colin are thrilled that Daniel has just been given the allclear by the hospital and has been told he doesn’t need scans any more.
Now the six-year-old is his usual boisterous self at home, with sisters Layla, eight, and Seren, two.
Sarah Lindsell, chief executive at The Brain Tumour Charity, said: “Daniel’s story proves that HeadSmart saves lives. We’re delighted for this lovely family that he’s doing so well, and very grateful for their support.”
For more about brain tumours or their symptoms, visit headsmart.org. uk.
LIFELINE, hosted by diver Tom Daley, can be seen on BBC iPlayer.