Published: Fri, July 06, 2018
Medical | By Vicki Mclaughlin

Four-year-old girl with cerebral palsy takes first steps

Four-year-old girl with cerebral palsy takes first steps

A heart-warming video of a four-year-old girl with cerebral palsy taking her first steps has taken the Internet by storm.

Maya lives with cerebral palsy, but it didn't stop her from beating the odds to take her first steps - steps doctors said she wouldn't be able to take for months.

Maya's mother, Ann Tisdale, posted a video of the milestone to social media on Sunday.

With her parents, older brother and pet dog close by and urging her on softly, Maya Tisdale, beaming from ear to ear, rises from a blue bench in their Traverse City home and takes a few steps.

First Steps - 4 years, 10 months ❤️ ❤️❤️ I can't even put into words how we are feeling. "She's just kind of blowing it out of the water". She was diagnosed with spastic diplegia cerebral palsy before her second birthday and typically relies on two canes to walk.

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Maya, who is four, had to use canes and walkers to move around before her surgery.

Doctors performed selective dorsal rhizotomy (SDR) surgery, a neurosurgical procedure that selectively destroys problematic nerve roots in the spinal cord.

Maya previously walked with support. Physical therapy can help loosen muscles but, depending on the severity, some children may never walk and others may need a walker, braces or other forms of mobility assistance. The predicted timeline was around six months, but on July 1, about seven weeks post-surgery, Maya took her first steps.

While she celebrated this joyous moment for her daughter, Tisdale said Maya had a "long road of learning" ahead of her. "But to just to have those first steps and knowing that it's possible is so great for her and our family".

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