Woman starts new modeling career after undergoing life-changing leg amputation surgery


Laura Armstrong, 35, from West Drayton, London, had her left leg surgically removed last April and the life-changing procedure gave her the confidence to fulfill her modeling dream

Laura Armstrong had her left leg surgically removed last April
Laura Armstrong had her left leg surgically removed last April

A woman has started a new modeling career after undergoing leg-amputation surgery.

After years of pain caused by a rare bone disease and multiple tumors, Laura Armstrong, 35, from West Drayton, London, had her left leg surgically removed last April.

It was this life-changing procedure that gave her the confidence to fulfill her modeling dream and has since posed for the likes of Transport for London, Nuffield Health and Papa John’s Pizza.

Although Laura dreamt of becoming a model before the surgery, she felt that she was not the type of person that modeling agencies look for.

She said: “For so long, I wanted to apply to the modeling agency, Zebedee who are known for their use of diverse and disabled models.

Laura dreamt of becoming a model before the surgery
(

Image:

Mercury Press & Media Ltd.)

She had years of pain caused by a rare bone disease and multiple tumors
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Image:

Alice Webb/Mercury Press & Media Ltd.)

“It sounds ridiculous, but I felt that I wasn’t disabled enough when I was using my walking stick which really put me off applying it.

“However, before my surgery, I bit the bullet and applied before my amputation last year – they accepted me really fast!”

Since starting her modeling career, Laura has been involved in multiple campaigns including a billboard for ‘Transport for London’ and an ad for Papa Johns where she starred alongside Harry Redknapp.

She said: “I’ve done adverts for Nuffield health where I was shot using gym equipment, doing weights and yoga which was a really fun experience.

The life-changing procedure gave her the confidence to fulfill her modeling dream
(

Image:

Mercury Press & Media Ltd.)

Doctors had no choice but to offer her a choice of amputation
(

Image:

Mercury Press & Media Ltd.)

“This was my favorite shoot because they had booked a few Zebedee models so I got to meet other inspirational people that are signed to them.

“We’re like a huge family and its the most supportive and nicest environment to be in.

“It was a bit surreal – I was even in a Papa John advert with Harry Redknapp where I had to do stretches in a full football kit.”

Before her modeling career, Laura worked a desk-job in finance and used a walking aid to help her cope with severe pain in her leg.

She has since posed for the likes of Transport for London, Nuffield Health and Papa John’s Pizza
(

Image:

Mercury Press & Media Ltd.)

Laura is overwhelmed with the positive response that she has received
(

Image:

@Alicewebb/ Mercury Press & Media Ltd.)

She said: “I was born with the rare bone disease, fibrous dysplasia in my left fibular bone in my leg which meant growing up I was in Ormand Street Hospital for Children all the time – I was in so much pain and it had a real impact my daily life.

“I’ve been in so much pain for my whole life and I had to heavily rely on the use of a walking stick which was only made worse when I got diagnosed with fibromatosis in 2014.

“This condition gave me aggressive tumors in the same area which was quite shocking as both conditions are so rare.

“I had three rounds of chemotherapy to try and stop them from growing and causing me any more pain but it was unsuccessful which was really frustrating.”

Laura after her amputation surgery
(

Image:

Mercury Press & Media Ltd.)

‘As soon as the doctors suggested amputation, I didn’t think twice and I was fully onboard’
(

Image:

Mercury Press & Media Ltd.)

The agony that Laura experienced had a devastating effect on her mental health and daily life that doctors had no choice but to offer her a choice of amputation.

She said: “By this time I was on morphine every day just to deal with the pain which is no way to live your life.

“As soon as the doctors suggested amputation, I didn’t think twice and I was fully onboard – I saw it as a chance at a new life.

Laura is overwhelmed with the positive response that she has received so far and says that her friends and family are extremely proud of her.

She said: I can’t even begin to explain how it felt – I was driving home a dual carriageway when I first saw my billboard and started screaming.

“My friends would take photos of the adverts and send them to me which felt quite unreal.

“15% of population is disabled and not 15% of people you see in ads are disabled.

“Some brands are actively trying to be more diverse with their ads which is such an amazing thing.

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George Holan

George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.

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