news, Reports

Thanks for standing with us to save lives!

With your continued support Gift of Life has helped 11 children with cancer and haematological diseases in the first six month of 2022.

Since January, we have already invested over £223,000 in medical programmes and approved 17 applications for life-saving anti-tumour medications, radioactive iodine for MIBG-therapy as well as most modern and effective antiviral medicines.

This funding also covered expenses related to certified translations into Russian of three medical guides on Paediatric Acute Lymphoblastic LeukaemiaHodgkin’s Lymphoma, and Myelodysplastic syndrome published in collaboration with National Comprehensive Cancer Network, USA. Thanks to these manuals now available for millions of Russian-speaking audience, patients and cancer specialists in Russia have access to the most up-to-date and reliable information about these disorders and relevant treatments.

Your generous donations enabled us to pay for the following medications unavailable in Russia and irreplaceable in child cancer therapy:

  • 21 packs of Defitelio, a low-toxic drug which support liver function after bone marrow transplants; this supply helped three children to receive their post-transplant therapy.
  • 90 vials of modern and effective antiviral medication Foscavir for two patients with serious blood disorders – Aplastic anaemia and Thalassemia.
  • Iodine-131 (radioisotope of iodine) which made it possible to provide MIBG-therapy to six children with neuroblastoma, one of the most dangerous and aggressive types of cancer.

Among those 11 patients were six-year-old Inna from Perm region, 15-year-old Sergey from Ivanovo region, and three-year-old Vagif from Saint-Petersburg.

Inna was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukaemia in 2018 when she was three years old. Initially, when Inna was treated at a regional clinic in Perm her condition improved. However, it didn’t last for long as a relapse happened. The doctors agreed that the only way to help Inna was to perform a bone marrow transplant on her. The donor was one of Inna’s older brothers. After the transplant Inna had a high risk of life-threatening complication – hepatic veno-occlusive disease affecting liver function. Thanks to your contribution to the Gift of Life’s appeal, Inna was provided with a 90-vial course of Defitelio at a cost of £43,435. This treatment has helped to avoid the risky condition and speed up Inna’s recovery. Inna’s parents can hardly make their ends meet providing for six children. They would never pay for such an expensive treatment without your support.

Sergey has a serious condition affecting the blood, where the bone marrow and stem cells do not produce enough blood cells – aplastic anaemia. He was diagnosed in February 2020 and since then he is being treated at the Dmitry Rogachev Centre in Moscow. Doctors already performed two bone marrow transplants to replace Sergey’s defective bone marrow with a healthy donor’s one. After the second transplantation was done in May, Sergey was prescribed a 60-vial course of antiviral drug Foscavir at a cost of £14,061. This treatment paid from the funds donated by Gift of Life supporters was a key element of Sergey’s post-transplant recovery therapy.

Vagif got ill in August 2021. His acute condition with high temperature and vomiting was diagnosed as severe food poisoning at the initial examination. However, computed tomography and ultrasound scans showed the presence of a tumour localised in the abdomen. It was neuroblastoma, one of the most common cancers in young children. The only chance to suppress this resistant to treatment and difficult to cure tumour was MIBG-therapy with iodine-131. The radioisotope of iodine for Vagif’s treatment cost £12,084, a price Vagif’s family could not afford. Thanks to your help Vagif received this life-saving treatment on time.

Since the charity started fundraising in the UK in March 2011, Gift of Life has helped 521 children and young people. More than 630 applications to cover the costs of various medical needs of our patients and doctors’ professional development were paid for in eleven years of successful operation.

These achievements have been possible only because of your generous charitable gifts and invaluable support. Thank you so much for giving children in Russia a better chance to survive cancer!