FAMILY is proving to be the best medicine for little Lincoln Gardner as he battles back from the brink.
Not so long ago the seven-year-old Mackay lad was recovering in a Brisbane hospital from the debilitating impacts of a disease that strikes just one in 100,000 people.
Guillain-Barre syndrome pushed Lincoln to the brink of paralysis as his immune system attacked his nervous system.
Watching her son struggle with extremely painful legs, blurred vision and no appetite, mum Paula felt helpless.
Eventually Lincoln's legs stopped working, his skin was covered in red blotches and his nerve ends were so raw he could not stand to be touched.
"He started losing muscle control, he couldn't even hold his arms up," Ms Gardner said.
"At one stage he was laying on his stomach, unable to move."
Lincoln was airlifted to Brisbane Children's Hospital where he spent six weeks recovering from the disease that is extremely hard to diagnose.
"It's a very cruel thing to have," Ms Gardner said.
"He went through a lot of pain."
After weeks of intensive therapy, Lincoln's body began fighting back and Ms Gardner was finally able to bring her little boy home.
But he's still not out of the woods.
"These days he just gets very, very tired and his muscles are still very weak," Ms Gardner said.
"We have to visit the pediatrician and we have the rehab team come up from Brisbane to check him out."
A lot of the medical support Lincoln receives is provided through the Children's Hospital Foundation Queensland.
Ms Gardner said the foundation's work was vital in keeping her lad healthy.
And while medical experts play a key role in Lincoln's recovery, there are three special humans who are putting the spring back in Lincoln's step.
Croyden, 15, Grace, 13, and 10-year-old Lane are the children of Ms Gardner's new partner Damian.
"They are a huge part of Lincoln's recovery," Ms Gardner said.
"They have helped him to recover.
"Some people say physio is just playing and that's true.
"They all just get outside and run and ride.
"It's done wonders for him."
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