A girl who beats bone cancer and has had surgery to fix her foot in reverse is more active than ever before.
Amelia Eldred, nine, was diagnosed with osteosarcoma in August 2017 – the most common type of bone cancer.
Doctors amputated her knee and part of her leg and then attached her foot and heel joints from back to front to make a new knee.
The life-changing procedure, called a rotational plasma, allowed Amelia to slide her foot into a more functional prosthetic leg.
But since her operation, Amelia, from Tamworth, Staffordshire, has been involved in dancing, roller skating, trampolining and football.
Amelia, whose bone cancer has gone into remission, is now also riding donkeys, walks high in the air on ropes and enjoys long bike rides.
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A schoolgirl who defeated bone cancer after surgeons had performed a rare operation in which they amputated and reattached her foot back is more active than ever before
Amelia Eldred, 9, was diagnosed with osteosarcoma in August 2017, a common form of bone cancer
Since her operation, known as a rotation plastic, the little girl from Tamworth, Staffordshire, has started dancing, roller skating, trampoline jumping, and football. Pictured above: Amelia with her mother Michelle, 46, and her father Richard, 43
Her mother, 46, civil servant, said: “Amelia is a really great little girl, you would never have thought she had experienced what she had done.
‘She proudly shows her leg and never turned a blind eye to having to do the procedure at all.
“We told her that rotation plastic was an option, and Amelia made her decision after seeing a girl on YouTube who had the same operation and is now a dancer.
WHAT IS A ROTATIONPLASTY?
Rotationplasty is a surgical procedure that is often offered to children with bone cancer around their knee joints.
The operation involves the removal of cancerous bone, as well as some healthy bone, to guarantee a “clear margin.”
The lower leg is then rotated 180 degrees and re-attached.
This gives the appearance of a short leg with one foot to the back.
The foot and ankle then function as a knee joint, allowing the patient to wear more functional prostheses under the knee.
Advantages include that children are better able to exercise and daily activities.
Complications can include: decreased blood flow, infections, nerve injury and delayed healing.
“Amelia said she wanted to be like her. When she entered the operation, the last thing she said was, “hello tumor, you see loser!”
Mrs. Eldred also said that Amelia now feels that her new leg is her “super power.”
“She is proud of her leg and proud to show it and explain what she did,” she said.
“She will challenge all unkind words because she feels it is her super power.
“She was always such an active girl, she loves everything outdoors, she loves dance, athletics, sports and playing outside.”
Mrs. Eldred further explained that despite the fact that the rotation site was “controversial,” her family knew it was best for her.
“It is quite a controversial procedure that she has had, you must definitely go into it twice if you have never seen it before because her foot is back,” she said.
“As a family, we knew she had a much better chance of a long and satisfying life if the procedure went well.
“Because it went very well, she can do everything she loves, and now it’s even better because every activity is a new challenge for her.
“One thing we know for sure is that she’s too driven to let her prosthesis stand in the way of what she likes to do, and she proves it to us every day.”
Thanks to the operation of Ameleia she was able to wear a more functional prosthetic leg and since then she has danced so much that her new limb is broken
The surgery saw physicians amelia’s knee and part of her leg amputate before attaching the foot and heel joints from the back to the front to make a new knee joint.
Amelia, whose bone cancer has gone into remission, is now also riding donkeys, runs on high lines, goes roller skating and long bike rides and enjoys trampoline jumping
Amelia’s mother Michelle, 46, a civil servant, said: “Amelia is a really great little girl, you would never have thought she had experienced what she did
Amelia was diagnosed on her seventh birthday after her leg was swollen in a sports holiday club in August 2017.
Osteosarcoma is usually diagnosed in teenagers and young adults and is the most common type of bone cancer.
It affects around 160 people in the UK and 800 people in the US every year. It occurs when the cells that grow new bone form a cancerous tumor.
Doctors currently do not know what the cause is, but it is thought to be related to rapid bone growth, such as during adolescence.
Mrs. Eldred said: “Two weeks later she had an X-ray after the swelling had not disappeared, finding a tumor mass that had broken her left thigh.
“I can’t put into words how I felt that day, my world just stood still, thinking that my daughter was about to embark on such a terrible trip in the hospital, was terrible.”
The family was then referred to the Birmingham Children’s Hospital, where Amelia had an MRI scan and a biopsy, before she started chemotherapy in September 2017.
But in November 2017, when the tumor showed no signs of shrinking, the only options for Amelia were complete bone amputation or rotational plasma.
Both would be followed by another four cycles of chemo and six months of extra cancer drugs.
Mrs Eldred added: ‘In the end we opted for rotational plastic because it is what Amelia wanted.
Amelia’s mother added that she “shows off her leg with pride” and was not angry because she had to undergo the procedure
Amelia was diagnosed on her 7th birthday after her leg was swollen in a sports vacation club in August 2017. Pictured above: Amelia walks along a high line with her new leg
After her surgery, Amelia was referred to the Birmingham Children’s Hospital, where she had an MRI scan and a biopsy before starting chemotherapy in September 2017
Mrs. Eldred further explained that despite the fact that the rotation site was “controversial,” her family knew it was best for her. Pictured above: Amelia loves roller skating
“We held it together because Amelia did it, she was so positive and so unaffected by what happened that it kept us calm.
‘We have always tried to keep things as’ normal’ as possible after being diagnosed and telling Amelia that she can achieve everything she thinks.
“We always encourage her to try new things and fully enjoy life.”
Amelia has since fully recovered after her surgery and chemotherapy – although she will continue to check regularly to make sure it stays that way.
She spends her weeks proving to herself that she can do everything she thinks of, and perform activities that most able-bodied children do not.
Amelia has since fully recovered after her surgery and chemotherapy – although she will continue to check regularly to make sure it stays that way
She spends her weeks on herself to prove that she can do everything she thinks of and also perform activities that most disabled children don’t do
Mrs Eldred said: ‘She is just perfect, it has been such a difficult couple of years for us as a family, but she just smiled all the time.
‘We go swimming, trampoline jumping, donkey rides, complete attack courses, play football, roller skates and cycle.
‘Looking back, we are all so happy that we opted for rotational plastic because we now see all the things she can do as a result.
“She smiles and tells me she can do anything if she works hard enough and also tells me that” there is nothing wrong with being different, Mom, normal is boring! “
“We are just grateful that she is fine, everything else is a bonus.”
WHAT IS OSTEOSARCOMA?
Osteosarcoma is the most common type of bone cancer, usually diagnosed in teenagers and young adults.
It occurs when the cells that grow new bone form a cancerous tumor.
The cause of the cancer is unknown, but it is thought to be related to rapid bone growth, such as adolescence.
Most tumors usually develop around the knee, either in the lower part of the femur or the upper part of the tibia.
If the cancer has not spread, the long-term survival rate is between 70 and 75 percent.
If osteosarcoma has already spread, such as to the lungs or other bones when diagnosed, the long-term survival rate is around 30 percent.
- Bone pain (in motion, at rest or when lifting objects)
- Bone fractures
- Restriction of joint movement
There are a few treatment options for osteosarcoma.
Often administered before surgery, chemotherapy uses drugs that help shrink and kill cancer cells. The duration of treatment varies and may depend on whether the cancer has spread to other parts of the body.
In most cases, surgeons can save the malignant limb. The tumor and the surrounding bone are removed and the missing bone is replaced by an artificial bone.
A rotational plasma is a procedure in which the underside of the femur, knee and upper tibia are surgically removed. The lower leg is then rotated 180 degrees and attached to the femur.
sources: Macmillan and Healthline