Ballina’s Talaya Close, 9, is doing wellfollowing surgery to remove a brain tumour. She was out of hospital 30 hours after the operation.
Ballina’s Talaya Close, 9, is doing wellfollowing surgery to remove a brain tumour. She was out of hospital 30 hours after the operation.

'Talaya will be just fine'

JUST 30 hours after nine-year-old Talaya Close had risky surgery to remove a brain tumour she was out of hospital.

Mum Amanda Screen, of Ballina, is writing an online journal about the experience, which she has described as ‘incredible’.

After being told by countless doctors that Talaya’s brain tumour could not be removed, controversial surgeon Dr Charlie Teo agreed to the operation and he performed it in the Prince of Wales Hospital, Sydney, last week.

“Talaya has started walking on her own. She can make it to the toilet herself and can walk from the bedroom to the lounge and that’s about it,” Ms Screen has written in her blog.

“She is awake for about an hour at a time, but is very aware of all going on.

“She is starting to feed herself and has made her first quick phone call to Nanna.

“But best of all, no medications. Just Panadol every now and then.

“Her sense of humour certainly hasn’t been affected and she still gets a smile out every now and then.

“I still have to pinch myself to make sure I’m not dreaming. I am just simply over the moon.”

Family friend Helen Hans-low was thrilled Talaya was recovering so well.

She started the Help Talaya Appeal, which has raised $100,000 for the operation and its rehabilitation program.

More than $35,000 was raised from the Ballina Shire alone, with $15,000 from the rest of the Northern Rivers, $7000 from overseas, and the remainder from all over Australia.

“The operation went for four hours and Talaya only has three stitches,” Ms Hanslow said.

“It looks like she’s going to have a full recovery, although she’s still very tired at the moment.

“Within three months she will be back to 100 per cent.”

Talaya will visit a doctor in the next 10 days to remove the stitches in the back of her head.

The family expects to hear from one of the neurosurgeons next week once the tumour has been identified.

This will be followed by a brain scan in six weeks to check the whole tumour was removed.

Ms Screen said that in the meantime the family will ‘take our time, letting Talaya recover at her own pace’.

“Once she is awake for longer periods and able to cope with the car trip, we’ll drive back to spend some time with my mum,” she said.

“It is just simply amazing.

“I just can’t stop looking at her!

“To think of the absolute terror I was feeling just a few days ago, is now replaced by complete calm.

“Talaya really is going to be just fine.”



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