Toddler With Rare Condition Needs Stem Cell Transplant

In her three years of life, Kathryn Child has been through more than most adults. But now, she is facing one challenge she cannot survive without the help of her community.

Diagnosed with leukemia at 7 months old, Kathryn has undergone countless medical procedures.

“Lumbar puncture, drugs up the ying-yang, everything you can think of,” said her father Brian. “She wasn’t supposed to live through the first night.”

But she beat the cancer, as well as coronavirus, influenza and cytomegalovirus, which caused her to lose some of her eyesight. Most recently, Kathryn overcame a bout of pneumonia.

“Any one of these things should have killed her, but she ended up beating every single thing,” her dad said.

Now, the cancer treatments have left her little body with a rare condition, making it unable to produce T-cells to fight infections. Her immune system is basically non-existent.

Kathryn now needs a match for a stem cell transplant, and anyone can go to to request a matching kit. You just have to swab your cheek and mail it back. If you are a match for Kathryn, the organization will contact you.

“Somebody out there watching could save her life. They could be a match,” said Brian. “ Please help me. Thank you.”

The toddler is mostly confined to her room at Rady Children’s Hospital, so going outside for any length of time is a big deal.

Even during NBC 7’s interview, Kathryn so badly wanted to do what any 3-year-old would – begging her dad to put her down so she could “exercise for my legs.”

Brian said it is draining, emotionally and financially, to watch his child go through disease after disease.

“I mean, you look at your kid every day, and the doctors are telling you she's not going to make it probably. But then she beats it. And then something else happens, and the doctors are like it's not looking good. This is a bad infection,” said Brian. “And long term, you try not to focus on it at all. You have to focus on the day.”

For more information, visit Kathryn’s GoFundMe page.

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