The family of a tenacious little girl facing a fight for life after her body rejected her donor heart for the second time have spoken of their relief after she made a vital step towards recovery.
Llana Qazi,four, has been receiving round-the-clock support from medical staff in intensive care at Newcastle’s Freeman Hospital since suffering a cardiac arrest two weeks ago.
Doctors discovered she had suffered a severe rejection of the donor heart she had received at the age of just nine months.
But her anxious loved ones have been given a huge boost after she was taken out of sedation for the first time since being taken into intensive care and had a ventilator removed to allow her to breath on her own.
Parents Mohammad and Shazeb Qazi, from Dean Road, South Shields, have been warned she could yet have to go back on the waiting list for a second transplant heart – but doctors are working tirelessly to repair her donor organ.
Her family are now left to play a crucial waiting game as their brave daughter makes all-important progress on a long road to recovery.
Relatives have been at Llana’s bedside every day willing her to pull through her latest health setback.
Mr Qazi, 53, who runs Frydays fish and chip shop, in South Shields, said; “You can’t believe how much of a relief it is, there is someone up there looking out for her.
“It has been very draining, with the constant worry. The doctors are pleased with her progress but there are still a lot of questions that we don’t have answers for at the moment.”
Llana has overcome a host of hurdles since her birth, after being kept alive by a mechanical Berlin heart for eight months before a donor heart was found to give her a second shot at life.
But she suffered a new health blow last February when her body began to reject the organ, only for her to make a rapid recovery.
Mr Qazi is eager for public faith in the organ donor system not to be shaken – and is urging people to sign onto the donor list to give those in a similar plight to Llana a much-needed lifeline.