Accessibility tools

Alex's story

We’ll treat the child and the adult they’ll become

Precise genomic research will help young adults like Alex stay healthy now — and make sure they’re healthier long into their future.

Alex's story
Alex, age six, just before his diagnosis.

At just six years old, Alex was diagnosed with an aggressive brain tumour. The tumour, the size of an orange, needed extensive treatment and Alex immediately underwent surgery, chemotherapy, radiotherapy and stem cell replacement treatment. Yet despite all of this, the tumour grew again, and Alex was given a terminal diagnosis.

What happened next defied everyone’s expectations. It defied medical science. Remarkably, Alex got better. And today, aged 18, he is doing his best to get on with life as normal.

Anything that can be done to streamline the care process and avoid repetition would be a huge bonus. I want to support Cambridge Children’s Hospital in any way I can to make that possible for young people.

Alex's mum, Annalise
Alex garden Alex walk
Alex garden Alex walk
Alex, now aged 18, enjoys days spent in the sunshine

Alex has now spent over 11 years receiving care, needing support as both an inpatient and outpatient for a number of mental and physical health difficulties. In this time, he has required treatments spanning eight different specialisms. And he will need care for the rest of his life.

With so many streams of support, it is essential for Alex’s family that his care is fully integrated and his medicine is as effective as possible. This could be the difference between repeating his needs to a new healthcare professional, or a doctor knowing his entire history before they even meet. Between trialling medicines until they work, or receiving a precise, personalised prescription that’s specifically designed to improve his condition.

Cambridge Children’s Hospital is determined to make the transition from child-to-adult health services as smooth as possible for teenagers just like Alex. At such an important stage of their life, the last thing they need is more complication. We need to do everything to help them now, and long into their future.