A baby girl who was given a life saving bone marrow transplant seven months ago has died.
Fifteen-month-old Ava-Jai McInerney, from Oswaldtwistle, passed away on October 10.
The tot was rushed to hospital in November last year with suspected meningitis, but it wasn’t until she was transferred to the Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital that her family were told she had been diagnosed with acute myeloid leukaemia, a very rare cancer in babies.
After two rounds of chemotherapy, she was given a lifeline in March when a bone marrow donor was found through the Anthony Nolan Trust.
But just seven months after her life saving surgery, Ava began to deteriorate.
Her dad Chris said: “She had her bone marrow transplant, which was a success, but her immune system didn’t recover, she was prone to viruses and infections.
“She had a stem cell top up on September 2 and that seemed to work, but we then found out that her brain had begun to deteriorate and was no longer able to breathe for herself.
“The doctors did tests and scans on her brain and they came back negative, but it was deteriorating in size.
“They told us there was nothing more they could do.”
Ava-Jai’s parents Chris and Janine, along with her twin brother William and older brother Brandon, brought her home to Apple Tree Way from the hospital last Thursday. Chris said: “The hospital asked us what we wanted to do.
“We wanted to bring her home to die with us instead of in hospital, she passed away at four o’clock on Friday morning.”
Chris said the family don’t know exactly how their baby girl died, but are awaiting the results of a post mortem examination which they hope will give them answers.
Chris said: “Janine and I are devastated, her older brother Brandon, who’s 18, has found it very hard to deal with because she was his baby sister.
“We’ve found it very hard since she passed away.”
“We brought her to Derian House in Chorley, its beautiful here.
“Ava is in the Sunflower Room, and we’ll be bringing her back home to Oswaldtwistle on Sunday before her funeral.”
Chris paid tribute to his baby girl for how she fought her illness.
He said: “Ava-Jai made us the proudest people, its very hard to say exactly what I want to say.
“It makes us proud the way that she put up and we appreciate the time that we had with her.”
Ava-Jai’s funeral will take place on Monday, October 20 at Pleasington Crematorium in Blackburn.
At the opening of her inquest on Wednesday, October 15, the court heard that Ava-Jai diagnosed in infancy with acute myeloid leukaemia, she was given a standard AML treatment and she had a bone marrow transplant in March this year but suffered complications due to early virus infections.
She was taken to Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital with a distended gallbladder and died on October 10 at her home address.
A full inquest will be held on November 4.