Surgeon at Lister Hospital ‘overwhelmed’ by appeal response to save his young daughter’s life

There has been an overwhelming response to an appeal for a donor to help save the life of 11-year-old Arya Lloyd, who was dia...

There has been an overwhelming response to an appeal for a donor to help save the life of 11-year-old Arya Lloyd, who was diagnosed with a life-threatening blood disorder earlier this year. Picture: Courtesy of Anthony Nolan - Credit: Archant

A surgeon at Stevenage’s Lister Hospital says he has been overwhelmed by the response to an appeal for help in saving the life of his young daughter, who is in desperate need of a transplant.

Geraint Lloyd – who is a consultant general, colorectal and laparoscopic surgeon at Lister – was told in July that his daughter Arya, 11, has aplastic anaemia. It is a blood disorder which causes the body to stop producing new blood cells needed to carry oxygen, prevent infection and stop bleeding.

A blood stem cell transplant is needed to save her life, but nobody in her family is a match. An appeal in the Comet last month was shared widely on Facebook and led many people to join the donor register.

Geraint said: “We have been overwhelmed by the support we have had and we are truly grateful and touched by everyone’s kindness. Everyone who registers could be saving someone’s life. We need to keep going and encourage many more people to join the stem cell register to save as many lives as possible.”

Arya, who is being treated at London’s St Mary’s Hospital, said: “When I first became unwell, I remember getting a stomach ache. At first it felt like a stitch but the pain didn’t go away so I had more tests.”


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Arya’s mum, Brundha, said: “Arya has always been fit and healthy, but life changed very quickly. All of a sudden we were talking to doctors about aplastic anaemia and Arya has had to stop many of the things she liked doing.”

Because she is of mixed race, Arya’s best chance of a donor match is from someone of Indian or mixed Indian/Caucasian origin.

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“It was always unlikely we would find a match quickly,” Brundha explained. “We started this appeal because we don’t want to give up hope. Being on the register could have a major impact on someone else’s life. You may never be called on, but if you are you could be a lifeline for someone. One person out there could be that person.”

Arya added: “They said it would be hard to find a donor for me because of my ethnicity, but it isn’t impossible. There is hope. The message I would like people to take away is to ‘never give up hope and please join the register’.”

To find out more about joining the Anthony Nolan register, visit anthonynolan.org/arya.

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