Runner Jo back on the streets after "miracle" operation

By Michael Upton | 11/05/2018

Runner Jo back on the streets after 'miracle' operation
Jo (far right) with friends Clare Rogerson and Geraldine Hughes

A DEDICATED runner whose hobby was ended by a debilitating spinal condition is back in trainers and hitting the streets after a "miracle" operation.

Jo Glenn (51), from Sunnyside, was forced to quit the sport she loves having battled a curved spine for decades.

But then she was referred to a renowned surgeon at Sheffield’s Northern General Hospital who operated on her spine, enabling her to take up her fitness passion once more.

And on May 6 she completed the North Lincolnshire Half-Marathon with running buddies Clare Rogerson and Geraldine Hughes to thank surgeon, Lee Breakwell and his colleagues and raise money for the Sheffield Hospital’s Charity.

Jo was diagnosed aged 20 with scoliosis — a medical condition in which a person’s spine has a sideways twist or curve but declined corrective surgery after being told it would restrict her movement and may stop her playing some sports.

She said she regretted the decision “every day”.

After having two children, her back became worse and, at times, needed “a cocktail of painkillers”.

Jo said the condition worsened in her 40s and she had to stop running due to the pain, which left her “devastated”.

Only after chance meeting with a neighbour who is a nurse, who noted she had not seen Jo running for a while, did she learn about the potential of corrctive surgery, which her friend’s son had undergone.

“I thought I had left it far too late for surgery but she advised me to look into it and gave me the name of a fantastic surgeon based at the Northern General Hospital,” Jo said.

“I discussed the pros and cons with my family and we decided the operation was worth the risk — the rest is history. 

“I had my operation in the summer of 2011 and have never looked back. 

“Before the operation the curve in my spine was 60 degrees, but the operation reduced it to around 20 degrees — a miracle!” 

She added: “I started back running and in 2014 ran the Race for Life, a 5k run and several 10k events after. 

“I joined a local running club and now run with a group of friends several times a week. 

“I was extremely fortunate that things turned out so well and have never looked back. 

“To say it’s completely changed my life is an understatement and I wouldn’t be where I am now without the support of my wonderful family and friends.”

You can still sponsor the three friends on their fundraising page.

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