Monmouth girl returns to school after pioneering surgery
5:12pm Friday 13th September 2013 in Monmouthshire news
Monmouth girl Chase Vaughan has returned to school at Whitchurch C of E Primary after undergoing life changing surgery to help her to walk, Chase is pictured in class with her teacher Victoria Laird (1081017)
AFTER undergoing pioneering surgery in the summer holidays, one Monmouth girl was happy to be back in school with her friends this week.
Chase Vaughan, seven, had two operations that surgeons hope will prevent her from relying on a wheelchair.
The youngster, of Cornwallis Way, suffers from a debilitating nerve-muscle condition known as spastic diplegia cerebral palsy, which meant that until her operation she walked on her toes, had stiffness in her legs and poor balance and co-ordination.
During the summer, surgeons successfully carried out a radical procedure on Chase in June before performing a second operation at Bristol’s Frenchay Hospital ten weeks ago to lengthen her muscles.
Chase, who attends Whitchurch Primary School, near Monmouth, was born 15 weeks early weighing just 1lb 8oz and had to wear splints and have regular physiotherapy.
Her mum, Helen Morgan,31 raised £40,000 in eight months to fund a procedure, not available on the NHS known as Selective Dorsal Rhizotomy which uses a technique developed in the St Louis, USA.
It involves making an incision in the spine to divide the nerve roots that contribute to the spasticity and will help avoid further muscle deterioration and stiffness.
Within weeks of the operation, Chase took her first steps unaided and was making remarkable progress.
Miss Morgan is now calling for the procedure to be made available on the NHS.
She said: “Chase is still wearing splints but her balance and movement are improving every day and she can put her feet flat on the ground.
“She started the new term last week and is really enjoying it.
Whilst she does get a bit tired she is doing brilliantly and has been horse riding and swimming. "