JUST four weeks after undergoing life-changing surgery to help him walk unaided, Jack Pike has cycled for the first time.
Five-year-old Jack, of Penhill, suffers from spastic diplegia cerebral palsy, which causes stiffness in his leg muscles, making it very difficult for him to walk.
He underwent pioneering surgery on his spine in Bristol four weeks ago, more than two years after his parents Kylie and Gary launched a fundraising campaign to raise the £24,000 needed for the operation.
And now, he is making use of his first bike.
Mum Kylie said: “He is doing so good. It is unreal that only four weeks ago he had his spine opened for a life changing operation and now he is riding a bike for the first time.
“He is just doing so well at everything already, I am so proud of him.”
As the Pikes were refused NHS funding for the £24,000 surgery, they launched a campaign to secure the sum.
Thanks to the help of generous Swindonians, they eventually reached the £32,000 mark.
Before the operation, known as a Selective Dorsal Rhizotomy, Jack had to undergo a test known as an ECG to make sure he would be able to cope with the surgery.
But the operation itself, which is a complex neurosurgical technique that targets nerves in the spine, did not go as seamlessly as the family had hoped.
The initial incision was too low, as what the bone surgeons were targeting was actually higher up his spine.
This prolonged the procedure and left Jack in excruciating pain, but he is now improving every day.
Kylie said: "He doesn’t get a lot of pain now, just bad spasms in his legs but is on medication for that. He likes to show everyone the scar on his back. It’s bigger than it was meant to be but has healed so well.
“His walking is also getting there – I took him into school before half term and he walked into class with flat feet and his teacher started crying. We’re so proud.”