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Misdiagnosed: Boy’s Cancer Battle Ignored As ‘Ear Infection’

Doctor's dismissal leads to delayed diagnosis of rare neuroblastoma, family seeks life-saving treatment abroad.

A six-year-old boy is battling cancer after a bungling doctor dismissed his symptoms as an “ear infection” and possible “autism.”

Sebastian Nunney was diagnosed with neuroblastoma, months after complaining of ear ache and his parents noticing his weight had plummeted.

Mom Lindsay was initially told he had probably developed an ear infection when she took him to a GP when he was three years old.

The family have since complained about the doctor and she was ordered to undergo further training following an investigation by the General Medical Council.

Lindsay, 41, who fell pregnant with Sebastian after undergoing IVF, said: “I was with Sebastian, he was clearly in pain and didn’t want to be examined.

He had an X-ray which showed a large mass in his chest and further tests revealed he had neuroblastoma, a rare cancer that mostly affects babies and children.

He was rushed to the Queen’s Medical Centre in Nottingham and placed on a ventilator and underwent a tracheostomy so a tube could be inserted into his windpipe.

Dad Gregg, 43, an English teacher, said: “At the very beginning he was very sick.

The people with diseases have difficulties in finding the necessary medicine and treatment in the country, such as cancer patients, mostly women and children, coming from all over the country are being treated at the hospital. Weeks later in July 2020 his parents took him to hospital after he became increasingly weak and tests showed his oxygen levels were dangerously low. PHOTO BY MOHAMMED HAMOUD/GETTY IMAGES 

“One Friday we were told by the nurses that we were allowed to be together at his bedside – even though Covid restrictions said we couldn’t – ‘to make things more manageable,’ but we were told afterwards it’s because they didn’t expect him to make it through the weekend.”

They took turns on the bedside vigil where a heavily sedated Sebastian was started on a grueling 80-day chemotherapy program.

Despite the odds being stacked against Sebastian, the brave youngster battled back and his tumor shrunk so much that doctors hailed it a “miracle.”

But earlier this year, doctors discovered a cancerous growth in his leg and blood tests revealed the disease may have returned.

Gregg said: “At the end of May, Sebastian was still suffering – he was sore and tired – very upset and falling asleep at school, refusing to eat.

“At the point we got the results, we were basically told that there isn’t much hope now and we will try and find something to manage his pain.

While undergoing treatment on the NHS, the family, from Kettering, Northants., have launched an appeal to raise £200,000 to send Sebastian abroad for potentially life-saving therapy.

One of the therapies the couple are looking into is CAR-T cell therapy which is available in Italy and America.

It works by collecting a patient’s white blood cells, editing them in a lab to seek and destroy tumour cells, then injecting them back into the body.


Produced in association with SWNS Talker

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