Ipswich: Date set for Brooke Lawrance’s life-changing operation

LITTLE Brooke Lawrance’s dreams of walking for the first time are closer to becoming a reality today.

A date has been set for the six-year-old’s life-changing operation in Missouri, America, much to the delight of parents Sarah and Peter.

The youngster was diagnosed with cerebral palsy as a baby and has been confined to a wheelchair ever since.

But the pioneering surgery could enable her to take her first steps unaided.

Mrs Lawrance, of Morland Road, Ipswich, said: “Now Brooke’s got the date she is really scared and I can completely understand that.

“She will be in hospital for her seventh birthday on November 19 and isn’t happy about that.”

The couple, Brooke and their other children – Nadine, Neve and Samuel – will fly out to America a few days before their first consultation with the St Louis Children’s Hospital specialist.

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Brooke will have to remain in hospital for five days and in America for a total of five weeks. Mrs Lawrance added: “We’re all going over to support each other and otherwise it would be a very long time to be apart.”

It was originally hoped the surgery could be carried out at Frenchay Hospital in Bristol but the family were told Brooke was not suitable for the treatment in the UK.

“I’m petrified, scared and excited – everything is all rolled into one,” she said.

The Lawrance family have been fundraising to pay for the �70,000 selective dorsal rhizotomy operation at St Louis Children’s Hospital in Missouri since last October. To date, they have raised more than �46,000.

The six-hour selective dorsal rhizotomy operation involves nerves in the lower spine being cut and would be followed by intensive physiotherapy.

Visit www.justgiving.com/brookeswishtowalk or www.brookeswishtowalk.co.uk to help make Brooke’s dream come true.