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‘Our dreams are coming true’: other Oxfordshire families who fundraised for cerebral palsy surgery – Banbury Cake

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Gabriel Masih-Gill with mum Paula Masih-Gill in 2016. Pic: Richard Cave

THE Balmer family are not alone in their quest to secure cerebral palsy treatment known as selective dorsal rhizotomy.

Several families appeared in the Oxford Mail before, seeking the same surgery.

Barton mum Paula Masih-Gill fundraised for SDR for her son Gabriel, now 17, who has cerebral palsy as well as a complex bone condition.

He has since been accepted for surgery in Nottingham, scheduled for August.

Mrs Masih-Gill, 41, said: “It’s a massive relief, we fought for this for five years. All our dreams are coming true. Initially we thought the operation was only done in America.”

The operation was pioneered decades ago in America but only recently made it across to the UK.

Camren Haines with mum Sophie Haines in 2016. Pic: Jon Lewis

Kidlington mum Sophie Haines, 30, made her first public appeal in 2013 for SDR funding for her son Camren.

Now six, Camren’s spastic quadriplegia cerebral palsy is still hampering his childhood as his family struggles to meet the cost of surgery in the USA.

Mrs Haines said: “We are still fundraising, Camren is not deemed eligible for SDR in the UK because he is too severely affected [by his condition].

“With this surgery, ‘Ive seen children go from commando crawling to walking unaided. I want Camren to have the happiest, most pain-free life.”

In the UK, hospitals have a strict criteria about which children are suitable for SDR.

Results of an NHS trial for SDR surgery are set to be published in autumn 2018.

Source: ‘Our dreams are coming true’: other Oxfordshire families who fundraised for cerebral palsy surgery – Banbury Cake