Baby boy diagnosed with potentially fatal tumour after he stopped laughing


Caitlin Molyneux, 22, said her 13-month-old son Zaki had been “smiley” and happy up until eight weeks ago – when doctors discovered he had thyloma

Caitlin and Zaki
Caitlin and Zaki

A baby boy was diagnosed with a potentially fatal tumour after his mum noticed he had stopped crawling and laughing.

Caitlin Molyneux, 22, said her 13-month-old son Zaki had been “smiley” and happy up until eight weeks ago.

But, in September, she began to notice that her son “wasn’t himself”.

Little Zaki was taken to see a GP and was first diagnosed with a viral infection, reports the Liverpool Echo.

But his situation did not improve, so his mum took him to hospital – where she was given a shock diagnosis.

Caitlin, from Garston, Liverpool, was told Zaki has thymoma, a life-threatening tumour that had wrapped itself around the young boy’s heart and was creating pressure on his internal organs.

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Zaki stopped smiling – a warning sign for his mum



The tumour had also collapsed his windpipe.

Medics then had to give the family even more heartbreaking news – telling them the tumour was inoperable due to its size.

Caitlin’s sister Courtney said: “They said it was the whole size of his chest, it was really big.

“He’s the only baby in literature who has been diagnosed with this.

“Alder Hey said there was a little girl or boy in Paris who was four with this. They were the youngest at the time but now Zaki is; at the time he was 11 months.”

A GoFundMe page has been set up for Zaki



Doctors at Alder Hey decided the best course of action was to try and shrink the tumour so that it was small enough to operate on.

Zaki is now on his third course of chemotherapy.

The family hope they will received some good news before Christmas telling them the medication has shrunk the tumour enough so that it can be removed surgically.

Speaking about when Zaki first started showing symptoms, Courtney said: “It got to the point where he just wasn’t himself at all.

“He wasn’t laughing, he stopped crawling, a little bit of everything, he was just lethargic.

Zaki is on his third round of chemotherapy



“He would just lie there and look at you. Normally he’s a very happy baby, a very smiley baby, and he just sort of stopped laughing and smiling. He just really wasn’t himself at all.”

Courtney has now set up a Gofundme page for Caitlin, Zaki, and his sister Zahra, two, to help the family out at this difficult time.

Courtney, from Toxteth, Liverpool, added: “We were all devastated – nothing like this has ever really happened in our family.

“Obviously we’ve had deaths in the family but nothing to do with children being ill like this, it was a big big shock for all of us.”

On the fundraising page, Courtney paid tribute to her sister’s strength as a mum in the face of her son’s frightening diagnosis.

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She said: “Everyone who knows my sister Caitlin knows how strong she has been and that her children are everything to her.

“Many friends and family have asked how they can help so I have created this page to help ease the financial burden of cancer.

“Within this time, Caitlin has also moved house and is creating a beautiful home for our miracle to go home to.

“Those of you who know Zaki, know he is the most lovable, funny and sweet little boy and he is fighting this horrible disease.

“From myself and my family, we greatly appreciate your support, kind wishes, donations and prayers for Zaki’s long road to recovery and can’t thank you enough for you support during this time. Thank you.”

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George Holan

George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.

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