Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Boy with cerebral palsy walks for the first time after £45,000 operation in U.S.


New independence: Robin takes his first steps at home watched by his proud mother Natalie, after his operation in America

A football-mad six-year-old has walked on his own for the first time - after well-wishers raised £45,000 for life-changing surgery in America.

Robin Carter from Earby in Lancashire, needed a frame because he was born with a debilitating disease, but he has now taken his first 100 steps without help.

His mother Natalie said he's now desperate to have a kickabout with his pals after undergoing intensive physiotherapty sessions back at home.

Before the op: Robin, pictured here aged 5, could only walk with the aid of a special frame

Robin has spastic diplegia, a form of cerebral palsy that is caused by a type of brain damage at birth.

He nderwent two operations in St Louis, Missouri last month called selective dorsal rhizotomy and has amazed doctors with his progress.

Ms Carter said: 'We're just taking each day as it comes at the moment. I just keep thinking that come Christmas I'll be able to buy him his little wellies so he can play out in winter.'

She added: 'If he's looking at somebody else and we're telling him to keep his feet straight then he can do it, which is just brilliant.

A few days after undergoing his first operation, Robin had to go under the knife again.

Years of walking on his toes had caused them to shorten, so he needed surgery to have his hamstrings and heel cords lengthened.

Building confidence: Robin hopes with time he will be able to play football with his friends

Natalie, who made the trip to American with Robin's father Martin, said both operations were successful.

She said: 'The second operation went really well and he was out within the day.

'He keeps putting mirrors everywhere so he can see his feet because it really spurs him on - they look great.'

Robin was born eight weeks prematurely and diagnosed with spastic diplegia, a neuromuscular disease, when he was two.

Family and friends raised the £45,000 needed to pay for the surgery through a variety of events.

Natalie said: 'Everybody has been brilliant and we're so grateful.

'People are still organising things to help fund Robin's aftercare and we're hoping to get him a treadmill.

'Before the future would have seen him in a wheelchair, but now we will see him running around and playing with his friends, which is fantastic.'

source: dailymail

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