Lily Tock, 16, hopes a pacemaker gadget will help her eat normally after painful illness left her stomach paralysed. She suffers from gastroparesis and has to be connected to tubes for 18 hours a day to provide her with essential fats, oils and vitamins that otherwise her body cannot absorb.
The condition has caused her to suffer from dizziness, nausea and severe stomach pains for the past two years. She is forced to rely on tubes in her heart and small intestine to feed her essential fats and oils, as well as vitamins her body cannot absorb.
‘A brave teenage schoolgirl has revealed her battle against a debilitating stomach condition that may leave unable to eat or drink ever again.’
If she did choose to eat normally, it would cause her to spend days in bed throwing up or potentially a life-threatening bezoar - a blockage in the digestive tract.
It took two years for doctors to diagnose the rare condition, which affects just six percent of the UK population. Gastroparesis is a long-term condition in which the stomach cannot empty itself in the normal way.
The 16-year-old, speaking from her hospital bed , said she wanted to raise awareness of gastroparesis after symptoms including dizziness, nausea and severe stomach pains began at the age of 14.
After being born 11 weeks prematurely, she was tube fed and suffered with asthma, but her symptoms reappeared as she reached puberty. "It was very hard at Christmas not able to eat when Christmas is all about food and it's hard going out for meals with friends and family and just seeing all the nice food. "I often try to avoid meal times because I just want to eat. "I miss many foods like pizza, chicken, chocolate, even roast dinners and vegetables."
Karen, Lily's mother, said: 'It's very upsetting seeing your daughter in so much pain.
'It was important to finally get a diagnosis as doctors where starting to say it was psychological or in her head when actually she had a very severe motility disorder.'