doc

AT just two years old, Max Caven has battled through six operations at the Oxford Children’s Hospital.

But now the toddler is fighting fit and climbs anything he can get his hands on.

To thank doctors for their care, mum Ceri Caven, 22, of Gaydon Close, Carterton, is tackling the OX5 Run for the Headington hospital on Sunday, March 30, at Blenheim Palace.

Max was born seven weeks premature on June 30, 2011, with part of his bowel outside his body – a rare condition called Gastroschisis. As a five-hour-old baby he had surgery before a second operation at two days old to repair some damage to the organ.

Mrs Caven, said: “It was all such a blur, everything happened so quickly I can’t even remember it.”

After being moved from the neonatal intensive-care unit to Tom’s Ward, he had four more operations within six months.

But staff put in the extra effort to get Max healthy enough for him to have his first Christmas at home with his mum and dad, Joe Caven, 23.

Over a month they taught Mrs Caven how to feed him through a tube into his stomach and he was able to leave hospital on December 21. She said: “It was exciting to have his first Christmas at home, and very overwhelming.

“That he got home just before Christmas was amazing.

“All the staff were really trying to help us get home and they were really busy at that time of year anyway.

“I’m really grateful he is here, basically, he has had so many operations and blood transfusions.

“You look at him now and wouldn’t know any of it, he has no fear whatsoever – he’ll climb anything, he’s a happy little toddler.”

His little sister, Brooke, one, was born healthily.

Mrs Caven is hoping to raise more than £250 for the hospital taking on the OX5 Run.

The run, which is organised by the Oxford Mail and sponsored by Allen Associates, last year raised £98,000 for new equipment. It is hoped this year’s run will hit the £100,000 fundraising mark.

The run takes place in the grounds of Blenheim Palace, Woodstock, on Sunday, March 30, at 10.30am. Entry costs £10 and runners are asked to aim to raise £100 or more.