Miracle survival of schoolboy injured while playing on bike

callumBS''Callum Wood, aged 11, who has undergone a lifesaving operation.
callumBS''Callum Wood, aged 11, who has undergone a lifesaving operation.
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A SCHOOLBOY hurt in a freak accident while playing on his bike has undergone lifesaving surgery - performed only once before at Sheffield Children’s Hospital.

Callum Wood, aged 11, was riding his BMX when he fell and jolted onto the handlebars, splitting his pancreas in two.

Surgeons at Sheffield Children’s Hospital had to call in a pancreatic specialist to help in the extremely specialised five-hour operation, which had been done only once before at the hospital.

Doctors had to attach one half of Callum’s pancreas to his bowel to stop enzymes which would otherwise have killed him from leaking into his stomach.

His mum Lyndsey Delamore, aged 31, told The Star today: “I’m still in a daze - the last few days have been terrible.

“We thought the fall had just winded him - it didn’t even break the skin and just left a little red mark.

“But he felt really ill and started throwing up green bile. When he had a scan they realised the pancreas had been broken in half and he needed an operation.”

Doctors say Callum, from Beighton, will make a full recovery.

The Westfield School pupil was playing on his BMX outside his dad David’s house on Woodhouse Crescent when he fell onto the handlebars of his bike, which jabbed him in the stomach, piercing his pancreas.

David rushed Callum to accident and emergency at Sheffield Children’s Hospital - but it was only after scans that doctors realised the extent of the problem.

Sean Marven, consultant paediatric surgeon at the hospital, said an injury like Callum’s was extremely rare.

“We have done this procedure only once before in this hospital,” he said.

“Children fall off their bikes all the time, and now and then the fall injures their pancreas gland. Very occasionally, in a very small proportion of cases, the injury splits the pancreas in half.”

Mr Marven asked James Gardner-Thorpe, a specialist pancreatic surgeon who usually operates on adults at the Northern General Hospital, to help.

“In Callum’s case enzymes were leaking into his belly, so we had to plumb a bit of the bowel onto the pancreas to drain it internally,” Mr Marvern said.

“The prognosis is excellent - Callum will make a full recovery, and we hope he will be out of hospital within two weeks.

“It is really very, very rare to damage internal organs in a bike accident.

“Everyone who rides a bike will fall off at some point - but we don’t want them to stop riding their bikes.

“To have an injury like this is very unusual.”

Lyndsey, of Queen’s Road, Beighton, who works as a childminder and is also mum to 13-year-old Kyle, praised the doctors and nurses at the hospital.

“Mr Marven has been excellent, stopping in twice a day to see how Callum is,” she said. “And the nurses have been brilliant.”

Lyndsey also praised the Treetop House charity, run by the Sick Children’s Trust, which has enabled her to stay in a room at the hospital throughout Callum’s treatment.

“I don’t drive so there’s no way we could have come back and forward from Beighton every day,” she said. “Treetop House has been amazing - we couldn’t have done it without them.”

PANCREAS - THE FACTS

n The pancreas is a flat, oblong gland deep in the abdomen, between the stomach and the spine.

n It is an integral part of the digestive and hormonal systems that usually goes unnoticed - unless problems occur.

n The pancreas has two main functions - the first is to produce insulin and glucagon hormones which control the level of sugar in the blood.

n The second is to produce pancreatic enzymes which aid in the digestion of food.

n When Callum’s pancreas was ruptured, enzymes and other toxins leaked into his stomach and would have killed him if surgeons had not intervened.