A Wiltshire woman who was left paralysed and told she would never walk again has had her life transformed.  

Megan Field had a life-changing horse riding accident in May 2023. The accident damaged her spinal cord, causing paralysis of her lower legs.

The 35-year-old said: “It was like a light going out where the connection to that part of my body just went. I thought ‘I can’t feel my legs or anything below the chest, nothing’.”

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After surgery Megan, who is from Trowbridge, started to get feeling back in one of her legs and was later transferred to Salisbury Hospital’s Duke of Cornwall Spinal Treatment Centre to start her rehabilitation.

She was one of the first patients to use the £29,000 Stars Appeal-funded LiteGait – a supported mobile hoist system that enabled her to practice and build up her strength and confidence walking.

Four months after her accident she was able to walk out of the Spinal Treatment Centre with the help of her crutches and is continuing her recovery at home.

Wiltshire Times: Megan Field on the road to recoveryMegan Field on the road to recovery (Image: Spencer Mulholland)

Megan said: “This has been such a life-changing injury, which happened within a split second. I woke up in the morning able to walk and went to bed that night paralysed.

"You rely on equipment like the LiteGait and the physios to help you with your rehab. As a result of that I’m starting to walk again.

"When I first had my injury I was told I would never walk again.

“The progress I’ve made would have taken much longer without the LiteGait. Every day on the Spinal Unit, Stars Appeal equipment made a difference to my life. It is massively important and supports everything the therapists are doing. I don’t really have the words to say what this has meant to me. Thank you to all the Stars Appeal supporters who have made this equipment possible and helped me to walk again.”

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During her time in the Spinal Centre, Megan also benefited from the Stars Appeal Wi-Fi as well as other equipment and facilities funded by the charity, including specialist trainer bikes, the anti-gravity treadmill, adjustable dining tables and the Silver Lounge, which provides a quiet space and a place to socialise.

Spinal Centre physiotherapist Elly Marchant, who supported Megan’s rehabilitation, said: “The LiteGait is something we’ve wanted for a long time because we know how empowering it can be for patients.

"It is a great addition to our tools that we can use to start people’s walking in a safe environment. This would not have been possible without the generous supporters of the Stars Appeal. Thank you.”

The Stars Appeal, Salisbury Hospital’s Charity, also fund a range of activities for spinal injury patients including social events and day trips.

To find out more visit starsappeal.com