An aspiring dancer is racing against time to pay for life-changing spine surgery.
Lacie Carter, a 13-year-old with scoliosis, needs to drum up £43,000 for the procedure.
If she doesn’t manage to do this before she stops growing, the Bournemouth teen faces mobility problems and being in pain.
She also won’t be able to fulfil her dreams of becoming a dancer.
On Go Fund Me, her parents, Mitchell and Laura-lea, explained: “Our daughter who's almost 14, desperately needs life changing spine surgery abroad which isn't covered on the NHS, she has scoliosis, which is curvature of the spine, she has an S shape.
“Lacie is an accomplished dancer and she needs this surgery to enable her to carry on with her dreams.”
The parents first noticed the curve in Lacie’s spine in February 2020.
They couldn’t get an appointment with a doctor but a nurse practitioner told them they didn’t have much to worry about.
Mitchell and Laura-lea said: “We first noticed Lacie's curve in February 2020, took her to the doctors and as there were no doctors available that day we were seen by a nurse practitioner, she said she can see it but she said 'its just part of her, the way she was born'.
“Obviously being a professional we took that. The curve was ever so slight then – it was hardly noticeable.
“Fast forward to July when Lacie was in a bikini, that's when we noticed one hip sticking out more than the other, took her to the doctors which is when she was referred to Southampton General hospital.”
The parents continued: “We had an appointment in October to see the consultant and have x-rays done.
“She has a double S curve. 33 Thoratic and 46 Lumber.
“The only option available to Lacie on the NHS is full spinal fusion…
“Unfortunately where Lacie's curves start so low down she would need to be fused from the bottom meaning she would be left with very limited mobility.”
For this reason, the parents are fundraising for a VBT operation instead.
The Carter’s Go Fund Me page explains: “Going abroad for VBT (vertebral body tethering) surgery, she would be left with all of her mobility and will be able to live a normal life.”
They added that the surgery would mean so much to “kind-hearted” Lacie – who is passionate about sport and spending time with loved ones.
The parents said: “She loves dance, gymnastics, watching movies, shopping, playing with her younger siblings.
“We love going out for walks as a family although it can be challenging to get her involved with this now as she can't walk very far before she's in pain, as her curves progress, she is troubled with pain and discomfort while walking.”
As it stands, the family has fundraised £8,300 towards the surgery.
It’s a great start but they are only 20% through completing their goal.