Monday, April 8, 2013

Cerebral Palsy: Botox helps boy take his first steps

Brave toddler Aiden Farrell has taken his first steps after having injections of the anti-ageing cosmetic drug botox in his legs.

Aiden, three, was born with crippling cerebral palsy and his muscles tightened up so much so he was unable to straighten his legs without feeling terrible pain.

The toddler’s parents Sara and Gevun scoured the internet for treatment and discovered that Botox injections had been used to relieve symptoms before presenting the idea to UK NHS medical management.

Botox injections work by unblocking nerve impulses which restrict his movement - the same way celebrities use it to combat the effects of ageing.

Mother-of-four Sara, 31, from Gosport, Hampshire, said: 'Seeing Aiden take his first steps is something I never dreamed would be possible.

'I noticed as soon as we got home after having the treatment the difference was amazing. 'Usually he would sit on the sofa with his legs bent up but his legs were normal, like ours would be when we sit on the sofa.

'It may sound unusual but if it helps my little boy walk I do not care. It´s about trying to build up strength in his legs and walking more. He is using muscles he has never used before.´

'The difference in mobility is unbelievable.' Aiden has suffered health problems all his young life after being born prematurely at 29 weeks, weighing just 3lb and kept alive on a ventilator.´

Sara added: 'When I was told Aiden had cerebral palsy we grieved every day, especially because we have other children and could see them running around the house.

'It was difficult because we wanted Aiden to do the same things they could do.

'Over time his legs tightened up so much he was unable to straighten them. He would cry with any physiotherapy exercises he was given to strengthen his legs.

'I felt useless because all I could do was massage them to make his pain go away.”

After reading about the treatment online, Aiden was placed on an 18-month waiting list and in December last year was given 12 injections, two in each of his calves, hamstrings and groin.

The family were told there was only a 50 per cent chance of it being successful.

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