Kristen Waite and daughter Ocean are jumping for joy.

The two have had some good news — they won't have to travel overseas and undergo further surgery for Ocean, for now.

Ocean, the little Waihi girl who has captured the hearts of the community, has spastic diplegia cerebral palsy and underwent spinal surgery in the United States to correct the abnormal signals sent to her muscles.

Before the operation Ocean could only stand and walk short distances using a walking frame or crawl along the floor.


Big progress was made after the operation — which was funded by the Waihi community and businesses who raised $150,000 for the surgery — and Ocean is now walking independently.

Kristen had noticed less progress in Ocean and feared they may have to return to St Louis, Missouri for Ocean to undergo a selective percutaneous myofascial lengthening (PERCS) operation. PERCS lengthens the tendons and often follows the initial surgery.

''What appeared to be her hamstrings shortening turns out to be a combination of other issues mostly stemming from weakness,'' Kristen says.

They recently had an opportunity to catch up with surgeon Dr Park who had performed Ocean's initial surgery, while in Wellington. The surgeon was catching up with his Kiwi patients and they had a get-together with all the families.

The doctors had thought Ocean may require PERCS from the progress they had seen in videos. But when Dr Park saw her in person, the surgeon was thrilled with Ocean's progress.

''Dr Park has said we can reassess her need for PERCS when he returns in two years' time.
Thank goodness he could access her in person, as based on the videos it was looking as though she needed her hamstrings and possibly gastrocnemius muscles lengthened.''

Kristen has now cancelled her overseas plans.

Hard work on the treadmill and other physical therapy continues for Ocean as she continues to strengthen her glutes and hip muscles.