After discovering a rare cancerous bone tumor in his right leg, 10-year-old Dugan Smith and his family were faced with the fact that he may have to lose his leg.
However, with Dugan's passionate love for pitching on his baseball team and playing other sports, amputation simply wasn't an option. He wasn't sure what the future held for his baseball career, but he stayed positive anyway, saying:
"I didn't know if I was ever going to be able to run again. I didn't know if it was going to work so there was a hundred things running through my mind and I just try to stay positive."
His positivity was rewarded when he trusted his doctors to perform a rare surgery called Van Nes rotationplasty.
Instead of losing his entire leg and replacing it with a prosthetic limb, which would severely limit his mobility, only the infected part of the leg was removed. Then the remaining limb below the cancerous portion was rotated 180 degrees and reattached with the ankle acting as the knee!
While not as aesthetically pleasing to eye, it was the most physically pleasing option available for Dugan to achieve his dream of one day becoming a MLB pitcher! According to the young athletes doctor:
"You can run better and you can be more active when you undergo this surgery. If you're a bookworm or not concerned about high activity, people often choose to replace the bone because it is a more cosmetic operation. But once Dugan realized that he'd be able to play baseball with this surgery, he didn't look back."
Check out the video above to see how Dugan is doing with his new leg. Although different, it looks like he'll be just fine and we couldn't be happier for him!
Tags: abc, amazing, backward leg, doctors, kid, medical miracle, mobility, news, rotationplasty, video