SHE has endured more than 15 operations, countless hours of recuperation and even trips to foreign countries for treatment.
But schoolgirl Milly Maddison refuses to let the complex hip displaysia condition she was born with stop her from succeeding in life.
The 10-year-old was born without a left hip socket, meaning her thigh bone is held in place by muscle alone – a condition dubbed by baffled surgeons as “Milly’s thing”.
St John Bosco RC Primary School pupil Milly, of Town End Farm, who has featured in the Echo since she was a toddler, was diagnosed with the condition at just nine months old.
But despite the numerous operations, hospital and physio appointments, the youngster is praised by friends and family alike for her cheery, can-do attitude even though she often has to struggle with mobility issues. The plucky girl already has acting performances under her belt after appearing in David Ducasse’s Performing Arts School in South Shields.
And recently she has begun intense rehearsals for a production of Grease which will be held at the Customs House this summer.
Her mum Karen, 47, who runs her own ironing business from her Blyth Street home, said: “Milly is just full of positivity.
“I’ve always told her that just because she was born with a disability it does not mean you don’t try and whatever it is you do.”
In 2008 Milly travelled to Switzerland for surgery in which she was fitted with a hip spike - a waist-to-toe cast - for three months. During her treatment she has struck up a strong friendship with consultant Gavin DeKiewiet at Sunderland Royal Hospital.
The pair went on to become good pals and it is a friendship which remains to this day.
Even though Milly is always keen to get out and about with her friends, there is a constant risk that she can get hurt. “She a fall when she went to cub camp and had to take a step back for a while,” added Karen.
“But since then she has hit the ground running.
“We can’t put anything in her way.”