March 23, 2023

A five-year-old girl who doctors said might never be able to walk has taken her first unaided steps just days after her father tragically died.

Felicity-Rose Edgar, from Welling, south-east London, developed cerebral palsy after she was starved of oxygen at birth and had to be resuscitated following hospital delays in getting her mother to have a caesarean section.

The incurable condition affects movement and coordination and can leave patients with severe brain damage.

The family lost Felicity-Rose’s father Adam, 26, to pneumonia on Christmas Eve last year.

Despite coping with her father’s death, Felicity-Rose defied the odds just days later when she said ‘look mum I’m going’.

Felicity-Rose, five, from Welling, south-east London, was starved of oxygen when she was born and suffers from cerebral palsy as a result.

However, the youngster has defied the odds and the doctors’ expectations and can now walk without help

Delays in getting a caesarean for Amber, 26, (left) at Queen Charlotte’s and Chelsea Hospital in Hammersmith meant Felicity-Rose was starved of oxygen and had to be resuscitated

Amber, 26, said: ‘We were all devastated to lose Adam and especially Felicity as he was her best friend.

‘About a week after he died, Felicity suddenly said, “look mum, I’ve got to go” and she threw herself across the room.

‘I just burst into tears of happiness after all the pain I had felt from Adam’s death.

‘She continues to prove everyone wrong. She can even read now when the doctors said it wouldn’t be possible. When Felicity was born, we almost lost her, but now look at her. She is our miracle child.

Her father Adam became her best friend and looked after the youngster, who has since learned to walk again

Adam died of pneumonia on Christmas Eve last year. He died before he could see his daughter walk unaided across the living room

‘She has made so much progress that we are looking into specialist surgery to further improve her gait.’

Felicity-Rose was born on 11 April 2017 at Queen Charlotte’s and Chelsea Hospital in Hammersmith, west London.

Her mother had a normal pregnancy, but errors by doctors, which led to a delay in her having a caesarean section, resulted in Felicity-Rose being starved of oxygen.

What is cerebral palsy?

Cerebral palsy is a group of lifelong conditions that affect movement and coordination.

It is caused by a problem with the brain that develops before, during, or soon after birth.

The severity of symptoms can vary considerably.

Symptoms may include:

  • Delays in reaching developmental milestones
  • Weak arms or legs
  • Random, uncontrolled movements
  • Walking on tiptoes
  • Difficulty swallowing, speech problems, vision problems and learning difficulties

Source: NHS

Felicity-Rose was not breathing when she was born and had to be resuscitated.

Since walking across their living room unaided, she has also learned to ride a tricycle and can even dance the Macarena.

Amber’s legal team from Osborne Law are looking into getting Felicity-Rose selective dorsal rhizotomy surgery at Great Ormond Street Hospital, which can reduce stiffness in her muscles.

The law firm has secured a significant interim payment from Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust to pay for rehabilitation, care and specialist equipment.

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The Trust said care for Felicity-Rose ‘fell below the appropriate standard during her mother’s birth in the period leading up to her birth’.

It added: “With care of the appropriate standard she would have avoided sustaining such neurological damage”.

The family’s solicitor Jodi Newton said: ‘Felicity’s story is inspiring and she continues to amaze us all with her astonishing progress.

‘We are grateful for the Foundation’s continued support and for the latest interim payment of compensation, which will have a huge impact on [her] life and enable her to continue with her rehabilitation.’