The mother of a ‘cheeky’ four-year-old boy has shared an adorable photo of the tot showing off his huge surgery scar – after a whopping £90,000 was raised to save his life.
Young Freddy Vallender is finally to return home to live a normal life, after surgery to have a life-threatening cardiac tumour removed.
Freddy, from Bridgwater, Som., suffers from a rare heart condition which could lead to sudden death at any moment.
At four months old, the tot had an out-of-hospital cardiac arrest, and his parents were told he had a less than ten per cent chance of survival.
But last month, thanks to a fundraising page and multiple charity appeals, Freddy was able to fly to Boston to have a life-threatening tumour removed, which was the cause of his heart arrhythmias.
Freddy underwent the gruelling surgery at Boston Children’s Hospital on January 22 – and his thrilled mother, Cathryn Vallender, posted on Facebook on February 14 that he had been discharged.
Cathryn, from Bridgwater, Som., wrote on the Facebook page Freddy’s Fight For Life: “Freddy has been discharged! Clinic with Dr Walsh today and he is happy with Freddy’s progress.
“Thank you for every single person for your support and prayers. Your support has been amazing.
“Team Boston Children’s have performed another miracle, saving our son and our beautiful Fibroma friends one heart at a time.”
Freddy’s condition meant he is facing sudden death every day due to dangerous heart arrhythmias.
Writing on his Fundraising page, Cathryn said: “At 4 months old Freddy had an out of hospital cardiac arrest, and we were told that there was only a six to eight per cent chance that he would survive.
“But miracles happen and Freddy survived, due to the amazing work of the paramedics and incredible CPR by our neighbour.”
She added that Freddy was diagnosed with a cardiac tumour in his left ventricle, measuring 5cm by 3.5cm and making up most of his heart wall.
By the time Freddy turned four, he had had three heart surgeries a defibrillator implanted in his stomach.
But there are currently no cardiac centres in the UK that have any experience in carrying out the surgery that he needs.
Cathryn wrote: “The tumour causes dangerous heart arrhythmias which make Freddy’s heart beats in excess of 200 beats per minute and can lead to sudden death by him going into cardiac arrest.
“Having a poorly child changes you as a person. You do not dare to look into the future and you live in the moment.
“You face the fragility of life everyday, so we now need your help to perform another miracle.”
And hundreds of people stepped in to help, raising over £90,000 for Freddy to fly to Boston for the life-changing surgery.
The adorable four-year-old will return to Boston in the summer for a further electro physiology study to check on the rhythm of his heart.
But as of January 29, Cathryn said that doctors could no longer make his heart go into an abnormal rhythm.
Cathryn wrote: “The last four years have lead to this moment. Whilst we still have more tests and monitoring ahead we can’t believe how far we have come.
“Once again we want to say thank you to you all for your love and support and to The Ray Tye Medical Aid Foundation for making our miracle come true.”