Five-year-old boy's family found out he had cancer after he fell in the park

The family of five-year-old Reid Scanlon were shocked to hear his diagnosis Credit: Media Wales/Alison Scanlon

The family of a five-year-old boy have spoken of their worry after a fall in the park led to the discovery that he had cancer in both kidneys.

Reid Scanlon, from Tonteg, had fallen over while out with his minder at Taff's Well Park on August 17. However, his mother Alison said he then began complaining of stomach pains.

After taking Reid to A&E, nurses told Alison they were concerned he could have a problem with his spleen.

But tests at Noah's Ark Children's Hospital at University Hospital Wales found a Wilms' tumour (or nephroblastoma) the size of a grapefruit on Reid's left kidney.

Tests revealed that Reid had stage five Wilms' tumour Credit: Media Wales/ Alison Scanlon

Just days later on August 24, the family received the news that Reid had multiple smaller tumours in his right kidney.

Reid had stage five Wilms' tumour, where tumours are in both kidneys. For Alison, the news came as a "complete shock."

"He seemed to be a very fit and healthy young boy. He loves playing and being outdoors," she said.

"He’s often wrestling with his older brothers. It’s a blessing really for us that Reid fell over while playing in the park, because it caused some minor internal bleeding from the tumour and revealed the tumour.

"If Reid hadn’t fallen over, I think we’d have only realised he had the tumour because we would have been able to see it pushing his skin."

The symptoms of a Wilms' tumour, which, though rare, mainly affect young children, include a painless swelling of the stomach. 

Parents may also notice a lump in the stomach when bathing a baby, or if their child suddenly jumps a nappy size.

Reid is due to start six weeks of chemotherapy Credit: Media Wales/Alison Scanlon

A healthcare worker might also notice a swollen stomach when the child is having a routine appointment.

Sometimes, the tumour can bleed, which can cause pain, and there may be blood in the child's urine as a result.

Reid will start six weeks of chemotherapy treatment in the hope the tumours will shrink enough for an operation to take place.

"The aim is to try and maintain some sort of kidney function for Reid because obviously he needs his kidneys,” Alison added.

"We’ve been told the condition could be to do with genetics and he could have been born with it. We found out the tumour in his left kidney had actually been growing for months. There were no signs at all and yet the mass in his left kidney is the size of a grapefruit."

Alison says the family are trying to stay positive for Reid. She continued: "It’s been horrible. When you hear the word cancer you feel like it’s the end of the world and we’ve been very worried and we are worried.

"But the consultant has told us treatment is available for Reid and we’re hopeful it will work."

The family has set up an online fundraising campaign to support Reid through the treatment process. You can see the fundraising page, which you can see here.

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