Tyne & Wear

Donor appeal for six-week-old heart patient

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Media captionCharlie Douthwaite was born with hypoplastic

The family of a six-week-old baby born with "half a heart" has made an urgent appeal for donors.

Charlie Douthwaite is believed to be the youngest person in Britain waiting for a transplant, and is being cared for at Newcastle's Freeman Hospital.

A Europe-wide appeal has been launched on social media in the hope another family grieving at the loss of their child, might be able to help.

His mother said: "It is the most precious gift you can give anybody."

Charlie was born with hypoplastic left heart syndrome, meaning the left side of his heart is underdeveloped.

Image caption Charlie Douthwaite is being cared for at the Freeman Hospital

Asif Hassan, director of transplantation at the hospital, said: "We have got him to a stage where we could put him on mechanical assistance supporting the heart to pump blood around the body.

"But I'm very fearful if we don't get a heart in the next few weeks, it would mean in the next few months Charlie might not be here."

Tracie Wright, said: "He had a cardiac arrest. It took 30 minutes to bring him back.

"Charlie's my world and I know that there's a parent out there who could be a position to help."

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