Ipswich: Brave Sara Dukes is determined to rekindle her dancing dream after devastating diagnosis
PUBLISHED: 18:40 18 March 2014 | UPDATED: 18:41 18 March 2014
Brave Sara Dukes always dreamed of a glittering career in the West End but a medical diagnosis left her hopes in tatters.
The 14-year-old was an ordinary youngster until the age of 13 when she was told the devastating news that she had a severe curve in her spine, which caused excruciating pain, and needed surgery to save her mobility.
Sara, a pupil at Copleston High School, was told she was facing major spinal fusion surgery until she found an exercise routine which has drastically changed her prognosis.
The diagnosis came after her mum Tammy, 35, noticed her shoulder blade was protruding on one side, she was tiring more than normal and complaining of aches and pains in her back.
Sara, who lives with her mum, dad, Mike, 46, and brother Christopher, 16, in Newton Road, Ipswich, said: “Scoliosis completely rocked my world.
“I have always been so passionate about dance, getting up on the stage and giving absolutely everything to performing but when I started feeling tired and getting pain down my back, it was really hard to stay motivated.
“I struggled to keep up with all my practices and I lost loads of confidence.
“Everyone around me was really worried and it was hard because I felt like certain things were being kept from me.”
Sara was referred to an orthopaedic specialist and her family was told that the curve in Sara’s spine was “one of the worst” they had seen and her only option was to have a 10-hour operation to fuse the spine from top to bottom.
In a bid to avoid surgery and an end to Sara’s dreams, her family researched alternative treatments online.
They found Scoliosis UK and the non-surgical treatment of ScolioGold, which is based on exercises, and booked Sara onto a four-week course.
Sara, who has always been passionate about singing, dancing and anything involved in being the centre of attention, added: “I feel like I have been reborn, it’s incredible the results I have.
“My back looks amazing and I have my energy back.
“My confidence has soared and I am so excited about going back to school and perfecting my new routines.
“I am still very determined to make it as a professional dancer and as soon as I have finished school this is something I am going to pursue.