A young Burnley mum has been left utterly devastated after her brave baby boy died just weeks after defeating a rare blood disease.
Little Max Moment was diagnosed with the cancer-like condition Langerhans Cell Histiocytosis when he was five months old. He died on Tuesday, April 15th, aged 17 months - six weeks after the disease went into remission.
His heartbroken mum, Mikayla Macmillan (27), said he had been absolutely fine the day before and had gone to sleep with a smile on his face.
“It’s just so cruel. I don’t understand why it has happened. He had still been receiving maintenance chemotherapy but he was better. He was happy. He was better than he had ever been.
“The doctors said he had got an infection. One of the side effects is that it suppresses your immune system so it is harder to fight off infection.
“I had to wake him up on Monday morning and when I took him downstairs, he was just floppy. I knew something was wrong and so I rang the emergency services straight away. They took him to Royal Blackburn Hospital. He was there for two hours. When they tried to move him to intensive care his heart stopped. They tried resuscitating him for 26 minutes but nothing happened.”
Max was treated for the disease, which only affects 50 children a year in the UK, at Manchester Children’s Hospital. It had taken doctors several months to diagnose him with so much not known about it. His skin was covered in blisters and rashes and Mikayla was originally told it was a skin condition that would clear up in a year.
Following the diagnosis Max underwent six months of chemotherapy but that failed as the disease spread to his liver and spleen. He then underwent three months of intensive chemotherapy and the results were positive. The disease went from his skin and spleen and only a small amount of it remained in his liver.
Despite having to undergo surgery and a total of 62 blood transfusions, Mikayla, who also has a five-year-old daughter Olivia, said her “amazing” little boy never stopped smiling.
“I’ve been looking through pictures for the funeral and there is not one of him without a smile on his face,” said Mikayla, who has recently moved from Myrtle Avenue, Burnley, to Clitheroe. “He was just always so happy. It was horrible at the beginning, because his skin was so sore. You couldn’t pick him up with hurting him but as time went on he just got better.
Mikayla said the entire family was just in a state of shock and they were struggling to come to terms with how cruelly their little boy had been taken from them.
“We’ve been through everything and this just seems so cruel. We really thought he had come through. It’s been so difficult for everyone. We spent all Christmas in hospital with him, including Olivia. Nobody expected this, not now.”