Glengormley boy Oscar Knox is facing another tough battle in his ongoing fight against cancer.
After a lengthy battle against neuroblastoma - an aggressive form of childhood cancer - the brave four-year-old had been clear of signs of the disease for several months.
However, his devastated parents Stephen and Leona yesterday went public with the terrible news that his cancer has returned.
“Oscar’s cancer has returned, the disease is extensive, and it’s spreading rapidly,” his mother Leona wrote on Oscar’s blog.
“We found out six days ago that he had relapsed after suddenly developing symptoms during our last few days in Scotland. We saw the full extent of it in the scans he had today. It’s not good, we are totally heartbroken and very frightened about what lies ahead. Our little man is in excruciating pain, not eating or drinking, and finding it very difficult to walk. The priority right now is to relieve his pain with regular and increasing morphine, and to decide on and begin a treatment plan ASAP.
“We have some very difficult choices to make, but more importantly Oscar has ANOTHER incredibly tough battle on his hands. Please please send every positive thought you have our way, and support our brave wee Oscar as he fights for his life once more.
“Stephen and I are shocked, scared, and overwhelmed by this news. We thank everyone for their incredible ongoing support, but need space and time to deal with everything.”
‘Wee Oscar’ was diagnosed with high risk neuroblastoma in November 2011. His brave fight against the disease, and his family’s efforts to raise funds for the Neuroblastoma Alliance, captured people’s hearts and minds across Northern Ireland and around the world.
His outstanding courage was also recognised at the recent Spirit of Northern Ireland Awards where he was crowed the overall winner.