A SCOTS mother who endured the agony of seeing one identical twin born healthy and the other with a crippling form of cerebral palsy has been given hope of a cure by a surgeon in the US.

Dee Buchanan, 30, hopes a revolutionary operation will allow her two-year-old son Callum to enjoy an active childhood and keep up with his able-bodied brother Mitchell.

The nursery nurse gave birth to the twins three months prematurely after a difficult pregnancy.

Doctors had been worried Mitchell was not growing in her womb, but he was born healthy and it was Callum who suffered debilitating problems.

Callum was diagnosed with spastic diplegia cerebral palsy at eight months old. His condition means that without surgery he will never be able to walk properly.

But in June he will travel to America, where pioneering paediatric neurosurgeon Dr TS Park will carry out the selective dorsal rhizotomy (SDR) procedure at the St Louis Children's Hospital in Missouri.

Callum's parents, Dee and Scott, 28, have launched a fundraising campaign to meet the £75,000 cost of the surgery and stay in America, and have already secured £35,000.

Dee said: "I think Mitchell helps Callum as he wants to do what Mitchell is doing and I think it will only help Callum in the long run as he has so much determination to keep trying.

"He is such a good boy – 90% of the time he is happy. He can wake up during the night and have tightness in his legs. That's when he gets upset.

"As far as everything else goes, he's fine. His speech is actually better than his brother's."

The couple, who come from Helensburgh but are based near Tidworth, Hants, where Scott is a vehicle mechanic in the Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers, were delighted when told they were expecting twins.

However, doctors at Salisbury District Hospital detected a problem with Mitchell's growth at Dee's 20-week scan. She was admitted to Princess Anne Hospital in Southampton for round-the-clock monitoring when she was 26 weeks pregnant.

The boys had to be delivered at 28 weeks because they developed a potentially fatal condition called twin-to-twin transfusion.

As they were so premature, they were given brain scans, which revealed Mitchell was healthy but Callum had a "flare" on the back of his brain.

It was diagnosed as periventricular leukomalacia (PVL), a type of brain injury which may have been caused by their traumatic birth, and which can lead to cerebral palsy.

Dee and Scott found out about the SDR operation when another young patient at the Princess Anne Hospital underwent it and saw a massive improvement. They researched the surgery then contacted the St Louis hospital and sent doctors a video of Callum to see whether he was a suitable candidate.

He was approved, and the couple began a fundraising campaign called Callum's Walking Wish, supported by friends and families in Helensburgh.

Dee, Scott and Callum will travel to the US for a pre-surgery assessment on June 17, followed by the operation three days later.

Mitchell will stay with his grandparents back in Scotland while his brother and parents are in the US for six weeks.