Never Give Up On Your Dreams
In early January 2011, 9-year-old Gabi went ice skating with friends. She fell and landed rather badly on her right knee.
After a series of x-rays, in a lot of pain and with no improvement, she was put on crutches and scheduled for an MRI.
Gabi’s MRI results showed what looked to be osteosarcoma, and this diagnosis was confirmed after a surgical biopsy.
The doctor said that Gaby’s skating accident was actually a blessing in disguise that may have saved her life because, were it not for the fall, they may not have known that there was anything wrong with her knee until it was too late
Gaby then underwent 12 weeks of aggressive chemotherapy treatments to shrink the tumour to an operable size; each treatment required a 4-5 day hospital stay along with several hospital admissions for fever and/or neutropenia.
In June 2011, Gabi underwent a radical surgery called rotationplasty. This surgery uses her healthy ankle as a replacement knee.
In this operation, Gaby’s diseased knee was removed and the foot was rotated 180 degrees then reattached to her upper leg, with her ankle serving as her knee.
Published on Feb 21, 2016
In this short video, cancer survivor and The Truth 365 spokesperson Gabi Shull explains Rotationplasty.
Gabi Shull had been dancing for three years when she was diagnosed with osteocarcoma, but thanks to a ground-breaking operation which saw her foot attached to her upper leg, and a lot of determination, she is back on her toes and hoping to inspire others.
Gaby’s motivation was her love of dancing:
“After I had my leg amputated the first call was to just get me walking again and get me out of the hospital bed,” she said. “But what motivated me to walk was the thought of dancing again because I just wanted to dance.”
Gabi revealed: ‘It was painful at first. I was afraid to put weight on my leg and then I had to get the motion back in my ankle because it was frozen at 90 degrees. It took me about a year and several personal trainer sessions to take my first steps without any assistance and a year after that I was dancing on stage again. The surgery has allowed me to do so much more than I expected and I would never go back and change it.‘
Gabi finished chemo in November 2011 and returned to her normal life, recollected all her ambitions and hobbies. After two years, She performed on her prosthetic leg at her first dance competition. Gaby is still NED (No Evidence of Disease)
Published on Jun 21, 2016
Gabi competing this season’s solo – “Forever Young” at the Rainbow Dance Competition. This is Gabi’s 2nd solo since her rotationplasty surgery in 2011.
Now the 15-year-old is a competitive dancer, cheerleader, athlete, and a national spokesperson. She is an inspiration to her dance teachers and fellow dance students, and she is using her experiences to help others – through The Truth 365 – a social media campaign that gives a voice to children suffering from cancer.
And Gabi has even bigger dreams for the future.
She said: ‘When I am older I would like specialise in paediatrics at colleges or work as a nurse or scientist looking to help find a cure for cancer. If I can beat cancer and live with a prosthetic leg and learn to do everything again – then I believe I can do anything.’
Posted on 31 October, 2016, in Articles, Blog, Videos and tagged cancer, Cancer Survivor, cancer treatment, Chemotherapy, Child Cancer Awareness, childhood cancer, Gabi Shull, Little Fighters Cancer Trust, paediatric cancer, Pediatric cancer, pediatric cancer awareness, rotationplasty. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.