Adorable toddler born with no fingers on one hand receives princess prosthetic
An adorable toddler born with no fingers on one hand has received a princess prosthetic – created with a 3D printer.
Now little Brooke Jackson is just like a normal three-year-old, picking up toys with both hands.
The bouncy toddler was born with symbrachydactyly leaving her with no fingers on her left hand.
Devoted mum Nichola Hayes, from Spalding, Lincs, was heartbroken and had resigned herself to her daughter being bullied for life.
But after finding a charity who use 3D printers to offer prosthetics to children, Brooke was fited with a ‘Princess’ prosthetic last weekend – meaning she can finally do everything her friends can do.
Nichola, 26, said: “I burst into tears when Brooke received the prosthetic.
“When doctors say there is nothing more they can do for your daughter I just felt awful.
“I assumed she would be bullied for having a deformed hand for the rest of her life.
“She used to call her stump her ‘little hand’ so she’s already christened this her ‘big hand’.
“She is such a resourceful little girl, and she has already learned how to do so many things with one hand, but as she gets older, I didn’t want to let it hold her back.
“She’s going to start school soon, and I want her to be able to play on the climbing frame with all her friends, and to be able to buy her a bike to ride.
“Her princess hand has changed her life.”
No deformity had shown up on any of Nichola’s pregnancy scans.
Full-time mum Nichola said: “There were 20 doctors around me when she was born and they had never seen anything like it.
“They said she was either sucking her hand in the womb or the umbilical cord had wrapped round it.”
When Brooke was 15-months-old she was offered plastic surgery to put toes on her fingers, but Nichola declined fearing her feet would be left deformed too.
But after a friend found a magazine article about a 3D prosthetic company, Nichola approached them and was thrilled when they agreed to provide a prosthetic for her daughter.
A delighted Nichola said: “When the charity got in touch I was over the moon.
“He asked what kind of things Brooke was into so she could decide on the colours.
“She absolutely adores anything princess, especially Sofia the First.
“I suggested pink and white, they’re her favourite colours so it was a no brainer for me.
“Drew Murray, the volunteer who made the hand, said he’d make her a ‘princess hand’ – so that’s what we call it now.
On Saturday March 7, Drew made a 250-mile round trip to fit the prosthetic and Brooke has had it ever since.
The device works on whenever Brooke, bends her wrist the fingers close around an object. Once she straightens her hand, her fingers open up again.
Nichola said: “It’s changed our lives.
“It might be big and bulky but it means Brooke can play like a normal three-year-old.
“Not only that, it’s given me a new peace of mind.
“I know now that she can go on her scooter and not be worried she’ll fall off every five minutes.
“I can’t thank Drew enough.
“What he’s done is amazing and he did it all for free.
“I could never have afforded to pay for it without him.”
“I’m really looking forward to May because it is her birthday and I can buy her a bike now.”
Brooke’s fourth birthday is coming up in May and Nichola is excited to buy her present.
She said: “I really wanted to get her a bike but didn’t think she’d be able to ride it.
“Now I’m not worried at all – I can’t wait to see her face.”
Drew Murray, the volunteer from e-NABLE, made Brooke’s hand using the pictures provided by Nichola and the hand designs developed by the charity.
Drew said: “The device itself works when the recipient bends their wrist inwards this movement causes the “Tendons” in the device to make the fingers create a fist like grip.
“This coined the phrase in e-NABLE ‘bend your wrist to make a fist’.
“Having the opportunity to make these low cost and potentially life improving devices for children like Brooke is a very humbling and rewarding experience.
“While these devices are no substitute for a real hand, they offer hope to the parents along with excitement and confidence to the recipients.”