A young lad is speaking out about his hip replacement after being inspired by Sheffield boxing champ Johnny Nelson.
Jack Brayford was just 17 when he underwent the surgery due to arthritis.
Now 23, the Barnsley student has shared his story after hearing about Nelson’s bid to become the first world champion boxer with an artificial hip.
Jack, of Thurgoland, said: “I was incredibly young and unfortunate to have the operation. It became worrying for me to continue playing sport as it would wear out my hip at a young age and I wasn’t sure the true limits it could take.
“However, it’s inspiring to see Jonny training for a pro boxing fight. It’s made me feel more confident with my own hip and what can really be achieved.”
Jack was 15 when he started suffering injuries and pains while playing football with Penistone Church Football Club.
After several tests, medics eventually diagnosed him with a type of arthritis called Ankylosing Spondylitis.
Former Penistone Grammar pupil said: “The condition I had disintegrated the joint around my hip. I ended up having the hip replacement to give my hip some strength again.”
Due to Jack’s long recovery, he had to drop back a year at school but went on to pass his A-Levels and gain a place at university. He aspires to run his own business and spends his spare time playing five-a-side football and going to the gym.
Jack’s consultant at Sheffield Teaching Hospitals, Dr Rachel Tattersall, said arthritis does affect 1 in 1,000 children and young people.
She said: “Since 2008, Sheffield has run a large young people’s rheumatology service and Jack was one of our first patients.
“Some young people like Jack only come to rheumatologists when they already have damage from their arthritis. Like Jack they can be treated with a hip replacement and medicines which allows them to return to a normal life.
“It’s great that he is raising awareness about young people’s arthritis.”