Toddler has head reattached to spine after ‘internal decapitation’

0:00

In what's proving a medical miracle, a toddler could soon be discharged from hospital after having his head reattached to his spine.

Sixteen-month-old Jaxon Taylor was facing paralysis and even death after a horrific car crash last month in northern New South Wales.

While his nine-year-old sister Shayne suffered abdominal injuries, the force of the collision ripped Jaxon's head and neck apart in what's been called an "internal decapitation".

But a groundbreaking surgery has got him back on his feet, and his parents are over the moon.

"He's very very resilient and very determined," his mother Rylea Taylor said.

"We're very very thankful," said his father Andrew Taylor.

Jaxon was air-lifted to Brisbane for treatment, where Dr Geoff Askin reattached the head to the spine using a tiny piece of wire.

Last week, Dr Askin explained how remarkable it is to see Jaxon back on his feet.

"A lot of children wouldn't survive that injury in the first place and if they did and they were resuscitated, they may never move or breathe again," Dr Askin said.

Jaxon's recovery has gone viral, with media coverage in the US, UK and even South America.

The messages of support from around the world have humbled the Taylor family.

“You just don't expect that there's so much good in the world and that so many people out there care," Mrs Taylor said.

Jaxon's family is using the ordeal to campaign for stricter penalties for reckless drivers.

There are also calls for the country's car seat laws to increase the age before a child can face forward.

"Children will possibly be staying rear-facing until they're two or three under the new seat-rules that we have under the new Australian standard," said Susan Teerds from Kidsafe Australia.

The halo on Jaxon's head has been readjusted to straighten his spine. 

If an X-ray on Friday goes well, he could be allowed to leave the hospital for what will prove a very special homecoming.

"It is, it is a miracle," Mrs Taylor said last week.

Stay up to date with SBS NEWS

  • App
  • Subscribe
  • Follow
  • Listen
  • Watch