Northampton teenager's fight against spinal condition to feature in new ITV series

Reagan Munnelly from Northampton, was diagnosed with Scoliosis when she was 12 years old.
Reagan Munnelly from Northampton, was diagnosed with Scoliosis when she was 12 years old.

A Northampton teenager who is being treated at Great Ormond Street Hospital (GOSH) will feature in a prime-time ITV series based at the hospital, set to air this September.

The six-part series, fronted by comedian and TV presenter Paul O’Grady, will follow the lives of some of the 600 children and their families from across the UK who come through the doors of GOSH every day.

Raegan and her family are set to appear in the ITV series when it airs on Thursday.

Raegan and her family are set to appear in the ITV series when it airs on Thursday.

ITV has confirmed that episode one of Paul O'Grady's Little Heroes will feature 15-year-old Reagan Munnelly from Northampton, who was diagnosed with Scoliosis when she was 12 years old.

The condition causes the spine to curve, and regular x-rays at her local hospital showed that Reagan’s curvature was worsening every few weeks. Due to the complex nature of her condition, she was referred to specialists at Great Ormond Street Hospital (GOSH) in 2017.

After arriving at GOSH, Reagan wore a plastic torso brace for 20 hours a day for 18 months, in the hopes of straightening the curve and avoiding surgery.

However, in Reagan’s case her condition was so severe with the spinal curvature at over 40 degrees, that she required a spinal operation to straighten it. This procedure features as part of Reagan’s story in episode one of the new ITV series.

Reagan’s mum Cassie Munnelly said: “The procedure is called a posterior spinal fusion. It involves the spine being pulled straight and then held in position by rods and pins. It’s amazing, but having such invasive surgery is a big deal. Reagan was in theatre for six hours, which felt like a lifetime.

“Our experience of GOSH has been really positive - from when we first arrived, right until we were able to come home. The staff were always very caring, everything was explained in such great detail and the whole team put us at ease when Reagan's operation day came.”

The ITV series Little Heroes will air at 8.30pm on Thursday, September 12 on ITV.

Host Paul O’Grady said: “It’s been a privilege to return to Great Ormond Street Hospital, meeting children like Reagan and their families as they face complex medical conditions and treatments.

“I’m so impressed by the incredible dedication of the staff who treat and care for the children and young people at GOSH, everyone from the front-line medical teams to the staff whose jobs are behind the scenes but are just as important.

“I can’t wait for you all to meet the children, young people and brave families who inspired me so much during my time at this very special hospital.”

To find out more about RBC Race For The Kids in aid of GOSH Charity please visit gosh.org/rbcraceforthekids