Belfast Telegraph

Amy, the girl who touched Rory McIlroy's heart, gets cancer all-clear

By Joanne Sweeney

Brave teenager Amy Uprichard has received the all-clear in her battle with myeloid leukaemia.

The schoolgirl with the biggest smile in Northern Ireland got the news that she, her family and medical team have been waiting for after she received a stem cell transfusion from her sister.

"I got results last week to say that my bone marrow is clear and my blood is 100% donor," Amy told the Belfast Telegraph.

"Everything is looking good and hopefully it will stay that way."

The 17-year-old positively glowed on Monday night when she stood in for Rory McIlroy as he was jointly named as the Belfast Telegraph's Sports Star of the Year along with world champion boxer Carl Frampton at a glittering ceremony.

No doubt the world number one golfer will be delighted to hear Amy's good news after he struck up a special friendship with her after meeting at the Cancer Fund for Children's Daisy Lodge last year.

Amy received a blood stem cell transplant on November 11, 2014 from cells harvested from the blood of her youngest sister, Gemma (12).

But the recovery was not all plain-sailing and Amy suffered a bad setback over the Christmas and New Year period.

She was hospitalised for three weeks after coming down with a severe throat infection.

Amy said: "I was absolutely flying after the transplant but took very ill around 11pm Christmas Eve night. It completely floored me.

"It was worse than anything I had experienced from the chemo and radiation treatment.

"But it's all looking great now and I'm so thankful.

"The doctors and nurses have really been amazing, they have been with me every step of the way and I can't thank them enough."

Her mother Sarah added: "It's like a big weight has been taken off our shoulders, but Amy had been amazing throughout it all.

"We will be watching her very carefully for the rest of the year to ensure that she doesn't come down with any infection."

Amy, an aspiring ballet dancer and beauty queen, has spent the past two years fighting against the aggressive cancer whilst being determined to continue with her dancing and all other aspects of her life.

By her side throughout her two-year illness has been her boyfriend, James Beattie (18).

The Uprichard family are now looking forward to celebrating Amy's 18th birthday with a big party in April.

Background

Lurgan schoolgirl Amy Uprichard was just 16 when she was diagnosed with myeloid leukaemia in May 2013.

She underwent five rounds of chemotherapy before she was described as being in remission from the aggressive cancer of the blood.

Her medical team at Belfast City Hospital later suggested to her that a stem cell donation from a sibling was vital to her recovery.

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