A BRAVE 10-year-old girl from Basingstoke is the oldest child in the world to receive a donor heart that did not match her blood type.

10-year-old Lucy lives in Marnel Park in Basingstoke with her family and was diagnosed with a rare heart condition called ventricular noncompaction when she was around 18-months-old.

The heart condition occurs when the lower left chamber of the heart (left ventricle), which helps the heart pump blood, does not develop correctly.

Her mother Jenny said the family were told that the only cure would be a heart transplant.

She said: “She was seen regularly at Basingstoke Hospital for regular heart scans and then when she was about 4-years-old she began to get more tired and she wasn’t reaching all her milestones.”

Lucy was referred Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children in London and had the life-saving operation when she was just eight-year-old.

Jenny said it was scary for everyone when they were told Lucy would need a heart transplant.

Lucy waited on the list for a heart transplant for over three years.

Jenny said: “We knew that it was a miss match blood group because we had been told that she could possible have a miss match blood group.”

Lucy’s procedure was part of new research into a blood-filtering device, called an immunoadsorption column, which is being used during transplants to reduce the amount of blood needed and to allow older children to receive a new heart.

It removes antibodies in blood that can lead to transplants being rejected and keeps a recipient's blood flowing to ensure they receive oxygen and nutrients until their new heart can take over.

Jenny added: “We didn’t realise that she would be the oldest in the world to have it.

"It is amazing and she could have been still waiting for a heart now if they had not come up with this new procedure.”

Jenny said without the new procedure it would have been “horrendous” as Lucy was getting weaker and weaker.

10-year-old Lucy is now doing “amazingly well” after having the operation 18 months ago.

Jenny added: “We are so grateful, and we are in a much better place than we were when we were waiting.

“It is amazing with this new procedure they have done but organ donation is still so important.

“There is still a lot of children and adults waiting on the transplant list and I think it’s really important that people have the conversations with their family regarding organ donation.”

Jenny said that Lucy is “so proud” and does not like being thought of as different.

She is now enjoying being back at school and is even taking part in dance classes.

Jenny hopes Lucy’s story will encourage more people to go on the organ donation list.

About 50 children are waiting for a heart transplant in the UK.