Emilie Meza discharged after last chemotherapy treatment following bone marrow transplant

ABC Action News has been following Emilie Meza’s story for months now.

When we first introduced you to the 1-year-old, she was in desperate need of a bone marrow match after she was diagnosed with a type of blood cancer called acute myeloid leukemia when she was 9 months old. Her story quickly took off and garnered thousands of sample kits, all from people who wanted to help. Unfortunately, none of the donations were a perfect match for Emilie.

When the doctors decided Emilie couldn’t wait any longer, her father, who is a half match, went through the procedure. Since Emilie’s father was only a half-match, her doctors tell ABC News they had to take special precautions.

“The first part of the transplant process she’s already completed, which is wiping her bone marrow clean with high-dose chemo and replacing it with donor’s bone marrow and immune system," said Dr. Benjamin Oshrine, Emilie’s attending transplant physician.

Even though her journey is not over, Emilie marked a huge milestone this week. She was discharged from John Hopkins All Children’s Hospital in St. Petersburg on Wednesday, August 2 as her chemotherapy is complete. Complete with her Superhero costume, she and her family walked out of the hospital to cheers and applause.

Emilie and her family will still stay close to the hospital at the nearby Ronald McDonald House as her medical journey will continue with frequent doctor’s visits and check-ups.

While Emilie’s search for a bone marrow donor took her back to her father, the kits that were sent in her name could help so many other people. That’s why the Florida office of Be The Match wants to remind people to continue to sign up to be donors. You never know whose life you could save.

For more information on Florida’s Be The Match, visit join.bethematch.org/FL.

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