Nathan Irving, a 6-year-old kindergartner at Vandora Springs Elementary School in Garner, was recently diagnosed with Perthes disease, an extremely rare childhood condition. Perthes causes the hip to deteriorate due to loss of blood flow.
After a persistent limp and several x-rays, Nathan went to an orthopedic doctor where he was diagnosed. He underwent surgery at Wake Med and came out with full-length legs casts with a bar in-between that holds his legs spread apart. This treatment helps the bone grow back into a rounded shape that will then fit properly into his hip joint socket. Nathan will be in a wheelchair for six to eight weeks and will need the help of his parents to perform simple daily tasks. Once the casts are removed, he'll be in full leg braces for 20 hours a day and will need a wheelchair most of the time—most likely up to two years.
Nathan's positive outlook on life and grown-up spirit will get him through this long four-phase recovery and the years of treatment ahead. He has a strong and loving support system at home including twin 10-year old brothers Mitchell and Maddox, his parents, Amy and Josh, plus his three chihuahuas: Holly-Jolly, Lucy-LaLa, and Blaze.
His love of Harry Potter, the color pink, animals, and school will help keep Nathan focused on his recovery. He recently chose the characters of "Yosemite Sam" and "Bugs Bunny" on his leg braces for when his casts come off. This summer, he's looking forward to being able to swim because his doctor told him that walking was off limits, but swimming will help with his recovery.
The long-term prognosis for Nathan is good and he's already made plans for his future—he enthusiastically shared that he wants to be a scientist.
Funds raised from the Capitol City Homes Charity Golf Tournament will help Nathan's family with hospital bills, medication, and physical therapy.