5year old survives liver transplant to attend school this August


A little girl who underwent a liver transplant at just nine months old is packing her bag, putting on her shoes and heading to school for the first time this August.

When she was just seven weeks old, five year old Ava Hainey was diagnosed with a rare liver disease and rushed to the liver unit at Leeds General Infirmary (LGI) – over 200 miles away from home in Paisley, Scotland. Ava underwent major lifesaving surgery, however at just eight months Ava went into liver failure again and was urgently taken back to LGI for a liver transplant. 

Ava’s Mum, Ashley Ewing, 30, said: “Although we were expecting the news that Ava would need a lifesaving liver transplant, when it came to it – it didn’t seem real. Ava was just so young, she was barely a year old – we didn’t know how such a little person would be able to cope with such a major procedure.”

Each year, The Sick Children’s Trust supports around 4,000 families with seriously ill children in hospital. Alongside Eckersley House’s self-contained liver transplant flat where Ava and her parents stayed, it has 22 family bedrooms, eight bathrooms and three fully equipped kitchens.