EXCLUSIVE: ‘Miracle’ as sick teenager’s spine heals by itself

14-year-old Megan Kershaw's spine which collapsed following treatment for rare liver cancer has now recovered. She is pictured with her mum Deborah, and sister Bronwen, 12. Picture: Liz Mockler D1772LM
14-year-old Megan Kershaw's spine which collapsed following treatment for rare liver cancer has now recovered. She is pictured with her mum Deborah, and sister Bronwen, 12. Picture: Liz Mockler D1772LM

A BRAVE girl battling a rare liver cancer which left her in a wheelchair, has made a “miracle” recovery after her collapsed spine healed itself.

Megan Kershaw has spent the last four years fighting a tumour which first came to light when she collapsed on her way home from school.

However, the 14-year-old has stunned doctors with her incredible recovery and is now living an action-packed life like her friends and celebrating passing her dancing exams.

Proud mum Deborah, 48, said: “She is a miracle.

“It is incredible what has happened and what the body can do.

“She’s back to being a normal, healthy child and can do all the things her friends do.

“Megan can now go horse-riding, ride rollercoasters and go skiing.

“She’s shown tremendous courage throughout everything. She’s back to doing her dancing, that has helped her so much, she has been very determined to go back to normal.”

The Misson teenager still has to have regular cancer check-ups and is scheduled to have a scan at the end of March to check on her progress.

Since being diagnosed, Megan has endured a gruelling amount of treatment at Sheffield Children’s Hospital and Leeds General Infirmary. She also underwent a nine-hour operation to remove three-quarters of her liver during which time her spine collapsed.

The South Axholme School pupil was having treatment for her spine before Professor Nick Bishop, of the Sheffield Children’s NHS Foundation Trust, suggested she see if it would heal itself naturally and has been overwhelmed by Megan’s recovery.

And now there is no stopping the youngster, who received a special donation from music mogul Simon Cowell to send her to Disney World Florida for her 13th birthday, as she prepares for a Royal Academy of Dance ballet exam next month.

Her dance tutor James Vaughan, of Scawsby-based Vaughan Academy of Theatre Dance, had been teaching Megan and her sister Bronwen, now 12, before the diagnosis.

He said: “Megan always had a great attitude and never missed a single lesson.

“When Megan was at her worst after the treatments had ravaged her body, she first came back to class in a wheelchair unable to walk very well still at that stage. She was a shadow of her former self.

“I was delighted to have her back in the school and her determination to succeed, despite her illness was an inspiration to us all. The ballet training has been the key to regaining her strength in her back and I always told her it would help regain strength in her whole body.

“Megan is a delight to know and teach. She is an inspirational young lady.”

Professor Nick Bishop, of the Sheffield Children’s NHS Foundation Trust, said on Megan’s case: “Megan’s spine collapsed as part of her illness last year but now she has been treated for the underlying illness and we’re delighted to see her growing stronger.

“Her spine is healing itself without any special treatment from us. The spine’s building blocks - the vertebrae - have growth plates on their upper and lower surfaces. It is these growth plates that have restored Megan’s vertebral architecture in such an exemplary fashion.

“The speed of recovery is fantastic and just shows how well children’s bones can recover in this kind of situation.

“Megan no longer needs to see me now her spine has healed, but as a Trust we will continue to work with the family and ensure they get the best possible care while it’s needed.”

The family is also celebrating the news that Bronwen, also a pupil at South Axholme School, has won a prestigious dance scholarship.

Deborah has co-written a cook book featuring sprout recipes which has raised over £7,300 for PACT - a charity that helps children with cancer at Sheffield Children’s Hospital.