A proud mother is raising money to take her brave boy, who gives himself weekly injections to stave off the effects of life-threatening diseases, to America for treatment.

Five-year-old Nicholas Stewart was diagnosed at birth with multiple illnesses that put pressure on his internal organs, including his heart, and cause swelling, including to his left hand.

Doctors have now told his mother Becky Stewart, 27, they cannot operate on a mass in his stomach, known as a lymphangioma, because it surrounds major blood vessels.

But Ms Stewart, a pensions administrator from Monkswell Lane in Chipstead, was thrown a lifeline after learning of a doctor in Boston who is trialling thoracic duct surgery that could provide a cure.

She has now set up a justgiving page to try to raise £200,000 for the trip, the tests and the treatment. She has raised just over £8,000 so far, and thanked friends and family for donations and support.

Your Local Guardian:

Ms Stewart said: “I felt quite relieved (when I found out about the trial). All the doctors here have always told me there is no cure.”

Kingswood Primary School student Nicholas has several diseases – the most serious of which is lymphangioma, a mass in his stomach that puts pressure on his internal organs.

Despite this, Nicholas, who was born eight weeks premature and also suffers from hearing loss, remains upbeat, his mother said.

Your Local Guardian:

Ms Stewart said: “He’s a very happy child.

“He’s very tough. He actually helps me with the weekly infusion putting the needles in his own legs.

“He doesn’t seem to recognise pain like we would because he has always felt it.

"Sometimes he will be in excruciating pain.

"He gets upset about spending a lot of time at Hospital, even though it is like a second home to him."

Ms Stewart added that his school had been supportive by holding an assembly to let children known about Nicholas’ condition, but the five-year-old does sometimes attract unwanted comments when out and about.

Your Local Guardian:

“He does get upset about the hand, but he does want to look like a normal child,” she said.

“It’s knocked his self-confidence.

“At school they’ve been really good. Before he started they explained his condition and so far, no one’s been horrible to him.

“But, when he used to have compression bandages on his hand, people blamed me for ‘burning him’. A lot of the time it’s the adults who are the worst.”

She added: “I don’t think I could go through what he does.”

To donate, visit https://www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/Flighting-for-the-future or https://gogetfunding.com/flighting-for-the-future/