A Northampton firefighter is hoping to raise £30,000 to send his severely disabled son to America for potentially life-changing treatment.
Paul Talbot’s son, Ben, was born with a brain abnormality, which specialists have never been able to diagnose.
It means the 14-year-old has to rely on his parents, Paul and Karen, to move around or talk.
Currently, Ben cannot stand, even with the aid of a walking frame, but Paul believes his son could if he underwent a pioneering new surgery at the St Louis Children’s Hospital in Missouri.
He said: “The surgery we’ve been offered in the UK is quite severe with a long recovery, which would leave him in plaster for six to eight weeks.
“For a child like Ben, that would be devastating.
“At St Louis they will do keyhole surgery on his legs.
“It’s an overnight recovery and there is no plaster, so for Ben it would be ideal.
“The only trouble is it’s overseas and its private.”
Paul, 47, and Karen, 46, live in Finedon, and said the £30,000 would cover flights to the USA, the treatments when they are out there and, once they return, physiotherapy to help Ben recover back in England.
But the treatment could help Ben stand with assistance and, if it is successful, there is also the chance of him having a follow-up procedure on his brain that could allow him to move independently.
Paul, who trains firefighters at the Moulton Park headquarters, said: “If Ben doesn’t have this procedure and things carry on as they are, there’s a real chance he will need hip replacements.”