LAUREN MCGRATH was just three years old when she was diagnosed with Leukaemia.
Eleven years later and she has battled cancer three times in her young life.
Lauren has undergone a bone marrow transplant, countless bouts of radiotherapy and chemotherapy, and last year lost a leg to the disease after an aggressive tumour was discovered behind her knee.
The 14-year-old, who lives in County Limerick with her mother, father and brother, also developed a rare form of epilepsy five years ago during her second battle with Leukaemia, and could suffer up to 25 seizures a day without medication, further complicating her recovery.
When Lauren complained of a lump behind her knee, the family initially thought it was from the use of her wheelchair, which she must use as her epilepsy makes it unsafe for her to walk as she risks collapsing at any time; despite being on tablets, Lauren still suffers six or seven seizures a day.
“But they diagnosed a very aggressive tumour,” her father Niall told The Irish Post. “We had a choice to make.”
The family were forced to make the decision to amputate the leg, as the tumour was wrapped around the nerves; surgery would likely leave her without the use of the limb from the knee down, and there was a chance the cancer could return.
“It took me three days to pluck up the courage to look her in the eye and say ‘You’re going to lose your leg to save your…