Botox boosts the distance pretty Alice (5) can walk

Alice Bates in her new gait trainer with mum Charlotte, John (12), Emily (9), Hannah (6) and Henry (3). Photo: SG190212-466MD
Alice Bates in her new gait trainer with mum Charlotte, John (12), Emily (9), Hannah (6) and Henry (3). Photo: SG190212-466MD
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CEREBRAL palsy sufferer Alice Bates is on top of the world now Botox treatment has boosted the distance she can walk with her gait trainer.

Alice (5), from Long Sutton, had the drug injected into her hips earlier this month and started intensive physiotherapy. Within days she went from taking her usual five or six steps to walking 20 metres.

The drug relaxed muscles in Alice’s legs, stopping them from crossing over and allowing her to step with confidence.

Mum Charlotte said: “We noticed a difference almost immediately. It wasn’t so difficult to move her legs while we were dressing her.

“About ten days afterwards we had an assessment with her physiotherapist and she wasn’t tripping over her own feet.

“She’s gone from taking five or six steps to walking the whole length of the school hall and back, which I would say is about 20 metres.”

Last year Alice received two life-changing gifts from Lincolnshire Free Press and Spalding Guardian readers.

Within two months of us launching an appeal, you bought Alice an £8,000 powered wheelchair with donations to the Lincolnshire Free Press Children’s Fund.

It was the first time Alice could move any distance under her own steam and join her brothers and sisters for play times in the park.

The chair is also Alice’s transport to and from school.

Earlier this term, Alice was awarded a certificate in her school assembly for achieving level one power chair skills.

Charlotte said: “She is very pleased with herself. She can now go in any direction on command – when she feels like taking instructions – and can anticipate when to stop when approaching an obstacle.”

Long Sutton Primary provided Alice with a gait trainer to use at school, but your donations allowed the family to have a secondhand £500 gait trainer at home.

Charlotte said: “I don’t know what we would have done without the Children’s Fund. There is no doubt it makes a huge difference to children’s lives and I want to say thank you again to everyone who donated.”