A mum has been left devastated after her son complained of a stomach ache for just over a week and was diagnosed with stage four cancer.

Demi Chapman, 23, said her son Freddy was still playing despite feeling poorly, and she thought he was constipated when she took him to A&E on July 17.

The mum-of-four, who lives in Handsworth, Birmingham, was left heartbroken when an ultrasound revealed a tumour between Freddy's liver and kidney, and a CT scan showed the cancer had already spread to his chest.

Demi told BirminghamLive: "I couldn't believe it. I just thought 'not my baby'. "It absolutely broke my heart.

Freddy Barnes had been feeling poorly when his mum took him to A&E last month (


Demi Chapman/BPM Media)

"I never thought in a million years it could be cancer.

"Freddy has got a twin brother, Finley, and I've got two other children.

"I'm a single mum currently living in temporary accommodation after splitting with their dad, so it's been a really hard couple of years for them. And now this."

She added: "I just thought he had constipation because he was saying he had a tummy ache and then he stopped going to the toilet, but then the doctor prescribed him some laxatives and he started going again.

Mum Demi Chapman, 23, cradles her son Freddy in hospital, where he is undergoing chemotherapy (


Demi Chapman/BPM Media)

"But then he got more unwell and didn't want to get up off the sofa. That's when I took him to A&E.

Freddy was diagnosed with stage four neuroblastoma, and has been undergoing chemotherapy.

His mum is waiting to find out if the cancer has spread to his bone marrow.

It is likely that Freddy will be in and out of Birmingham Children's Hospital for the next year, with doctors hoping the tumour will be small enough to operate on after three months of treatment.

The youngster watched from a window as his family released balloons in the hospital's car park.

His nursery, Smart Start, has set up a GoFundMe page to support Freddy and Demi, who is originally from Sutton Coldfield.

Demi said she was "overwhelmed" by the support, adding: "I couldn't believe it when I saw how much had been raised.

"It's just blown up over the last two days.

Doctors are hoping Freddy's tumour will be small enough to operate on after three months of treatment (


Demi Chapman/BPM Media)

"It just means we can plan days out and make memories with Freddy once he gets out of hospital.

"Having four kids and being a single mum, it means I can't really take them out that often unless I've got someone with me.

"Freddy's never been to the beach before - he's never left Birmingham - so it means we can do so much more with him. It will give us a fresh start."

Freddy Barnes, 3, with his twin brother Finley, sister Mayla and brother Mason (


Demi Chapman/BPM Media)

Smart Start manager Jenny Harris said: "We thought it was such a shame what's happened to Freddy. He was only in nursery two weeks ago and he was absolutely fine.

"We know the family quite well so we decided to do something to help. A lot of the staff have children ourselves so you can't help but think 'oh my goodness, that could have been me'.

"We set out to raise £500 for some toys and pyjamas etc and to help mum with travelling to and from hospital and we couldn't believe the response we've had. It's been shared far and wide."

Click here for the family's GoFundMe page.