When little Alex Logan lost his voice after gruelling chemotherapy
, his devastated parents never thought they would ever hear him speak again.
The brave five-year-old had been left unable to speak
after his battle for survival - until he got his voice back thanks to an ICE POP.
To the amazement of the doctors, who believed he had suffered brain damage, his voice came back after he swallowed a freezing cold ice pop, and his first words were: "I love you mummy."
His mum Deborah., 38, says: "I just burst into tears when I heard his voice. We never thought we were going to hear him speak again. It's all thanks to an ice pop. His throat had been so painful after the treatment he'd had that he'd been too frightened to speak because it hurt so much.
When he swallowed the ice pop it cooled and numbed his throat, so it gave him the confidence to speak again. I can't believe that an ice pop gave my son his voice back. It really is a miracle.
Little Alex first became ill in April 2010, a few months before his third birthday, when Deborah noticed bruises appearing on his legs:
"I'd noticed all these bruises appearing and at first I thought he was just banging himself as he regularly knocked into things.He was grumpy too and complained that his legs were hurting him. After a few days I started to get worried, as it wasn't like him. He was usually such a cheerful happy little boy."
Deborah took Alex to see her GP, who then referred him for blood tests. But the following morning he had to be rushed into hospital when he collapsed at the family home.
Deborah, a former police control room operator, says: "He came downstairs and he was staggering around and couldn't walk properly. He couldn't talk either, as he kept slurring his words. It was really frightening. I knew something was seriously wrong."
Deborah phoned an ambulance and Alex was rushed into Lincoln Hospital. Just a few hours later doctors had diagnosed him with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukaemia
. His condition was so critical that the cancer had caused blood clots on his brain which was causing his slur his words.
"He had to start chemotherapy immediately as the amount of cancer cells in his blood was so high," says Deborah, who lives with husband Barrie, 38, a lab technician, and their other son Ben, seven, in Lincoln.
"One of the doctors told us afterwards that she went home that night thinking that we were never going to see Alex again. They didn't expect him to live through the night as he was so ill."
The following day he was sent down for a brain scan, and doctors warned his devastated parents that he might not even survive the scan.
"They warned us that he may not come back up from the scanning room as he could die. We thought we were going to lose him. Then we were told that even if he did survive, he would have severe disabilities. He had so many white cells that were trying to fight the cancer that his blood had turned to the consistency of treacle. The doctors had only seen one such severe case before and that patient had died."
Three days later, Alex was still fighting on, and doctors gave him a five per cent chance of survival.
"Even though it was still only a small chance, at least he had been given a small fighting chance," explains Deborah.
There was a glimmer of hope for him. The doctors were amazed he was still here at all.
After 10 days Alex was allowed out of the intensive care unit and carried on making progress. After 12 weeks of treatment, doctors finally delivered the news that his parents had been waiting for. His normal blood count was increasing, and the leukaemia cells were decreasing.
But there was one problem. Alex hadn't uttered a word since he was first admitted to hospital.
"We couldn't understand it," says Deborah. "He had been chattering away easily before he was diagnosed, but since he had been in hospital he hadn't uttered a word.
"The doctors told us not to expect him to start speaking again - they thought it was the result of brain damage he had suffered because of the blood clots on his brain."
At the end of July, just a few days before he was allowed home from hospital, Alex was given an ice pop to eat because it was so hot. Amazingly after he had eaten the frozen treat, he said his first words, "I love you mummy."
"We just couldn't believe it," says Deborah. "He started to talk and those were the first words he uttered. It was the most amazing thing to hear in the world. It brought tears to my eyes.
"To think that the doctors had told us he would never speak again, and now he was telling me he loved me. It just seemed like a miracle.The doctors couldn't believe it either, they had never expected it. They said that it had probably been because of the pain caused by putting his feeding tube down his throat into his stomach.
It meant that he had lost the confidence to speak. But the soothing and numbing of his throat caused by the ice pop had given him the confidence he needed that it wasn't going to hurt when he spoke.
Alex is now in remission, but he will continue having maintenance chemotherapy treatment until July 2013:
"He's back to normal now and its wonderful to see. There is no trace of the cancer coming back and he can live a normal life. He's chattering away again, just like he used to and its all thanks to a simple ice pop. It gave my son his voice back."
Words: Lucy Laing at Worldwide Features
- Miracle baby survives six months of chemo in the womb
Mum Stephanie Papworth was 12 weeks pregnant when she was <a href="http://www.parentdish.co.uk/pregnancy-and-birth/the-miracle-baby-who-survived-six-months-of-chemotherapy-in-his-mother-womb-after-she-refused-abortion/" target="_blank">diagnosed with breast cancer.</a> Determined to give her baby a fighting chance, she refused an abortion, and baby Gabriel endured months of chemo, but was born healthy. Stephanie has now also been given the all clear after 12 months of treatment, and is now enjoying life with her new son.</p>
- Daughter's love letters help mum beat breast cancer
When doctors told Laura Binder that there was nothing they could do to save her from breast cancer, there was one person who refused to give up on her. <a href="http://www.parentdish.co.uk/mum/linzis-miracle-love-letters-daughters-letters-to-sick-mum-help-beat-cancer-remission/" target="_blank">Her daughter Linzi wrote her mum a letter full of love and support </a>every day during her seven months of treatment. The mum of two has now amazed doctors by recovering from the cancer which had spread to her liver, and says it’s all down to Linzi’s love letters: “She was determined that I wasn't going to die and I was going to get better. And her wonderful letters have helped a miracle happen.”</p>
- Brave Ellie plays football without arms and legs
Ellis Challis might have lost both her arms and legs to meningitis, but she certainly isn’t letting it slow her down. The brave six-year-old learnt to walk on prosthetic legs, <a href="http://www.parentdish.co.uk/kids/girl-of-the-match-brave-ellie-plays-football-without-arms-and-legs/" target="_blank">and now plays football for her school</a> - showing all the boys how it’s done! "It is fantastic to see Ellie playing football. When she lost her legs to meningitis we never imagined that one day she would be playing football for her school team,” says Ellie’s mum, Lisa. “All the other children are able bodied, but she keeps up with all the other team members. To think that she has prosthetic legs yet plays football for her school is just remarkable.”</p>
- Six-year-old boy beats meningitis every year of his life
Brave Seamus Rafferty has beaten the killer brain bug meningitis <a href="http://www.parentdish.co.uk/kids/seamus-rafferty-six-astounds-doctors-by-beating-meningitis-every-year-of-life/" target="_blank">six times in just six years.</a> The little lad has been left with epilepsy and a tremor in his hands, but has luckily escaped any brain damage. Since Seamus’ last recovery, doctors have discovered, and closed up, a small hole in his skull which they think had been letting the virus into his brain. They are hopeful that Seamus, and his mum, Caoimhe’s nightmare is now over.</p>
- Miracle baby was worth every penny
This is the longed-for baby who cost her parents <a href="http://www.parentdish.co.uk/2012/01/08/our-miracle-baby-cost-us-40-000-but-she-is-worth-every-penny/ " target="_blank">£40,000 to bring into this world</a>. Baby Alice is Karen and Gary McLaren’s pride and joy, following six failed rounds of IVF. The couple’s fertility treatment was so costly, that Gary’s dad actually sold his house to help fund the couple’s bid to be parents. After the safe arrival of little Alice, the couple say every penny was worth it.</p>
- Baby boys born at 24 weeks are most premature triplets to have survived in Britain
Meet Max, Harvey and Lucas, three very special little boys who are the <a href="http://www.parentdish.co.uk/2012/02/24/baby-boys-born-at-25-weeks-are-most-premature-triplets-to-have-survived-britain/" target="_blank">most premature triplets ever to survive in Britain.</a> The boys were born at 24 weeks and five days, weighing less than 2lb each. After three months in hospital, 12 blood transfusions and an operation to repair a tear in Max’s stomach, the three boys are now finally at home with their proud parents, Rachael and Ashley Udell.</p>
- Medical miracle Ryan is first baby to survive being born with his heart outside his body
Ryan Marquiss wasn’t ever expected to survive when he was <a href="http://www.parentdish.co.uk/kids/medical-miracle-ryan-marquiss-is-the-first-baby-to-survive-born-with-heart-outside-body/" target="_blank">born with his heart outside his body</a>. But the gorgeous little boy fought through the incredibly rare birth defect, and went through 12 major operations to catch up with his peers. Although he might require a heart transplant in the future, at the moment he’s thriving, so much so that his story has been reported in medical journals around the world.</p>
- Twins after nine years and 16,000 miles on fertility treatment
After spending a whopping <a href="http://www.parentdish.co.uk/2011/08/10/twins-after-nine-years-70-000-on-fertility-treatment-and-travelling-16000-miles/" target="_blank">£70,000 on fertility treatment</a>, Rachael and Mark Sadler are finally parents to twins Rebecca and Hazel. The couple reckon they clocked up over 16,000 miles during years of fertility treatment in a bid to be parents, but say every moment of heartache and every penny spent has been worth it now they have their gorgeous twins.</p>
- Twin Finn recovers from brain damage by copying his brother
When four-year-old Finn was diagnosed with a brain tumour, he made a <a href="http://www.parentdish.co.uk/2012/01/25/twin-finn-amazes-doctors-by-copying-brother-to-recover-from-braiin-damage/" target="_blank">remarkable recovery by copying his twin brother, Kian</a>. Finn has amazed doctors and his parents by over-coming mental and physical problems to be developmentally equal to Kian in every department!</p>
- Conjoined twins see each other for the first time
This is the incredible moment conjoined twins <a href="http://www.parentdish.co.uk/2011/09/15/the-look-of-love-conjoined-twins-joshua-and-jacob-spates-see-each-other-first-time/" target="_blank">Joshua and Jacob Spates saw each other for the first time</a>, following pioneering surgery to separate them. For the first six months of their lives, the two boys were conjoined at the base of their spines. Following 13 hours of surgery, the lads can now live independent lives and have been hailed as medical miracles.</p>
- Mum survives four heart attacks and a stroke while giving birth to twins!
New mum George Cormack <a href="http://www.parentdish.co.uk/2012/04/18/mum-survives-four-heart-attacks-and-a-stroke-while-giving-birth-to-twins/" target="_blank">amazingly survived four attacks and a stroke as she gave birth to her twins Oscar and Connie</a>. George almost died when her heart stopped after a bilateral stroke as she gave birth to her first twin, Oscar. Doctors put George in an induced coma to help her recover, and when she finally woke up, she spent three months battling to get back to health, getting to know her twins, and learning to speak again.</p>
- Mum-to-be refuses lung cancer operation to save unborn baby
Mum Daniella Jackson <a href="http://www.parentdish.co.uk/2012/05/15/mum-to-be-refuses-lung-cancer-operation-to-save-unborn-baby/" target="_blank">was left with a heartbreaking choice</a> when doctors discovered she had a cancerous tumour growing in her lung. She was advised to abort her growing baby when she was five months pregnant so doctors could urgently operate on the growing tumour in her left lung. But abortion was never an option for brave Daniella, and she was determined to wait until she gave birth to start treatment. A month later, the new mum underwent a four-hour operation to cut out the tumour and remove half of her lung, and is now making a slow recovery at home with baby Rennae.</p>
- Baby joy for mum who suffered 14 miscarriages, a stillbirth and the death of her two-week-old son
Maria Pridmore <a href="http://www.parentdish.co.uk/2012/03/06/miracle-mia-baby-joy-for-mum-who-suffered-14-miscarriages-a-stillbirth-death-of-son-two-weeks/" target="_blank">lost 16 babies over 13 years.</a> This included the stillbirth of daughter Shannon, and the death of her two-week-old son, Kia. Maria and partner John are now celebrating the birth of their healthy daughter, Mia Shannon, who was born by emergency Caesarean.</p>