Hope that Amy will walk again

Amy Kennedy (front), aged 14, with her mum Zoe Kennedy, sister Lucy Kennedy, aged nine, and friend Rebecca Beresford, aged 14, at home in Wheatley Hills.
Amy Kennedy (front), aged 14, with her mum Zoe Kennedy, sister Lucy Kennedy, aged nine, and friend Rebecca Beresford, aged 14, at home in Wheatley Hills.
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A TEENAGE girl bed-bound by a crippling condition has set her sights on walking again following pioneering treatment in America.

Amy Kennedy, 14, suffers from Complex Regional Pain Syndrome which left her in 24-hour pain and hyper-sensitivity.

However, after her family found out that she could get the help she desperately needed at the South Texas Innovative Medical Centre, they embarked on a fundraising campaign to get the £50,000 needed to travel 5,000 miles across the Atlantic.

Brave Amy, of Wheatley Hills, faced a series of obstacles in her efforts to fly from Heathrow to Texas because she could not sit in a conventional seat due to her rare limb condition which affects just one in 18,000 people worldwide.

“It was difficult for her because she was so sensitive and couldn’t use the chairs, she was also quite worried about the flight because of the pain she knew she’d be in,” said dad Scott, 37.

“But thankfully for Amy it went as well as it could have done, she was in pain but we’re so proud of how she coped. Our medical escort, the airports and airline were also fantastic.”

The Danum School pupil stayed in the United States for three weeks to undergo treatment from a £4,500 revolutionary machine which gave out electrical impulses to different parts of her body.

And the youngster has seen a massive reduction in the pain she has suffered since being bed-ridden back in November 2009.

She is also using her wheelchair for the first time and can now enjoy spending time with her dad, mum Zoe Matters, 38, brother Sam, 16, and nine-year-old sister Lucy altogether.

Her ultimate hope is to be able to walk again said Scott, of Adlard Road.

“It’s been fantastic, the trip was so worthwhile,” he said.

“She’s still feeling pain but there’s been a huge reduction in what she was feeling before, she’s really positive now and has her independence back which she hasn’t had for some time.

“We’re delighted with the results, there’s a very long way to go yet but this is the first step.

“We were all shown how to use the machine over in Texas and that unit has taken the edge off of her sensitivity. We’ve bought it too so she’s using it at home.

“She’s now hoping to get back up on her feet one day but we’re all realistic and know that it will be a long process, it will take time which Amy knows.”

Amy also plans to go back to Sheffield Children’s Hospital for physiotherapy and her parents want to make adjustments to their family home so she can get around easier in her wheelchair.