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10-year-old Megan seeks life-changing surgery

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screen-shot-2016-11-22-at-12-35-10MEGAN, a 10-year-old girl from Pembrokeshire, is currently awaiting life-changing surgery in Philadelphia following her diagnosis with scoliosis at just six-years-old.

Over the past year, Megan’s spine curvature has increased from a 50 degree curve to 62 degrees, a significant curvature for a 10-year-old that will require spine straightening surgery.

Megan is currently wearing a Boston Brace 23 hours a day.

“She hates it; it’s a constant battle to get her to wear it,” said Megan’s mum, Laura.

“But we try in desperation that it will hold her curve until she stops growing,” she continued.

If Megan’s curve progresses, growth rods may have to be inserted into her spine. These rods will have to be extended every six months until she has stopped growing.

When she has stopped growing, Megan will have to have her spine fused; this will result in her losing a lot of her flexibility.

Megan would also be unable to continue gymnastics, a sport that she loves.

However, Megan’s consultants aren’t sure that her brace will hold her curve through a growth spurt.

Laura has now discovered a life-changing surgery called VBT (Vertebral Body Tethering) that has been producing some amazing results.

This fairly new surgery is best performed on younger patients whilst their skeleton is immature and their curvature is less than 70 degrees.

The surgery will mean that Megan would maintain her flexibility and avoid further surgeries in the future. VBT also offers a quicker recovery time and a better quality of life.

Up until recently, VBT was offered in the UK as part of the NHS; however, it has now been cancelled. Megan’s only option now is to seek surgery abroad.

Shriners Hospital in Philadelphia is currently offering VBT to international patients that fit the criteria.

Providing Megan fits the criteria, her mother would like her to travel to Philadelphia for the treatment.

“Providing Megan is a candidate, it would be amazing, but we have to get her there and be able to stay in Philadelphia for possibly six weeks and then be able to return if there are any issues and for follow ups every year,” said Laura

The cost of the trip and medical expenditures is quite a lot and unfortunately, as Laura has two other children, this is more than she can afford.

Laura has now started a GoFundMe page (www.gofundme.com/megans-vbt-surgery) with the hope of raising the £20,000 needed.

Any excess money raised will be donated to Shriners Hospital and other GoFundMe pages with children in a similar position as Megan.

Laura now needs to raise the money as quickly as possible as a sudden growth spurt could suddenly knock Megan off the 70 degree cut-off, preventing her from being a candidate.

“This means so much to us because our children are our entire world; we would move heaven and earth to make sure they have everything they need,” said Laura.

“Megan needs this; without it, she will have to spend her teenage years in a brace that makes her angry and depressed and then have to have a surgery that will force her to give up gymnastics – the one thing in life that she loves,” she continued.

Laura and Megan would be eternally grateful to anyone who donates to their cause, helping Megan to get the life-changing surgery that she needs.

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A40 closed at Scleddau due to collision between car and motorbike

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EMERGENCY SERVICES have shut the A40 at in Scleddau due to a serious road collision.

The accident happened just before 2pm. The Herald understands that the collision involved a motorcycle and car at a junction near The Gate Inn public house.

Police said: “Emergency services are currently on scene and dealing with the incident. Please find an alternative route if possible. Update to follow.”

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Moley’s Ambassador March to support those who have lost a child

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ON SATURDAY (Jun 19), Andrew Cole (aka Moley) will set off on a 24 hour walk around Pembrokeshire with the aim of doing as many miles in as little time as possible. 

Moley is proud to have recently been made ambassador of the charity ‘2 Wish UponAa Star’ an organisation dedicated to supporting families that have lost a child under 25 years of age.

He will be setting off at 6am in the morning from Neyland and walking all day and night, finishing at 6am the following morning.

2 wish upon a star was set up by Rhian Mannings, who set up the charity after losing her own son.

By celebrating the lives of those lost, and offering support to families through their grief; Rhian and her team offer an essential service to the community and those families who have suffered the devastation of losing a loved one.

Appealing for support from the people of Pembrokeshire he said: “Please give generously to support the wonderful work of Rhian and her team. Also, if you happen to see me in the day, feel free to give me a beep of encouragement’

“If you would like to donate to Moley, and support the charity, you can visit his JustGiving page.”

https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/moleycole

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Lifeboats and chopper in major air sea rescue off the coast of Tenby

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TWO RNLI lifeboats from both Tenby and Angle stations have been launched to assist a coastguard helicopter which has been scrambled from MOD St Athen.

It is understood that a search for a missing person or persons is underway.

Paged this morning: Angle Lifeboat is currently involved in the search south of Tenby

The alarm was raised before 10am this morning (June 18).

Tenby’s Y-boat is also involved in the operation, The Herald understands.

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Rescue underway: Coastguard chopper position at 1030HRS on Friday, Jun 18 (Pic MarineTraffic)
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