Song Shurui, 17, from Chengdu, developed a severe lung infection after undergoing a bone marrow transplant in December, Chengdu Commercial Daily reported.
Struck with a life-threatening fever, the teenager was then moved to intensive care, with doctors declaring she had little chance to recover. Her oxygen supply was at maximum.
In the weeks that followed, her mother, Dai Qinjia, remained on a bedside vigil.
“I just didn’t believe my daughter would die and wanted to try everything with my last strength,” the South China Morning Post quoted Dai as saying.
It turned out that the only drug that could relieve Song’s acute symptoms is cidofovir, but it was not available in mainland China.
Determined to save her daughter, Dai took matters into her own hands and called for help on social media.
Fortunately, a man soon responded in goodwill and bought the drug.
“When Dai called me for the drug’s information at about 2am, she cried all the time and repeatedly said ‘please help save my daughter,’” he said.
The man pooled donations, bought cidofovir and asked another person to fly to Chengdu on the same day of Dai’s call.
Song received the drug 14 hours after its purchase and recovered gradually. Her temperature dropped and she was out of intensive care on March 5.
“I really wanted to bow to everyone who helped me buy the drug,” a grateful Dai told reporters. “Without any of them, my daughter might already have passed away and I cannot imagine how could I live my life without my daughter. I might have followed.”
Song, who happens to be a talented artist, aspires to become a flight attendant. She remains in the hospital for her leukemia treatment.