A TEENAGER who lost 10 stone in just nine months has won his battle to get an operation to remove rolls of saggy skin.
Anthony Caulton, 19, of Oakworth Avenue, Brookfield, Preston, had spent the past year battling with NHS chiefs who said he could not have an operation because he did not fit the criteria.
Now, he has won a reprieve after his doctor told them the problem was causing the youngster pain and stopping him from being able to exercise.
He is now hoping for an operation to take place in the next two months.
Anthony said: “I got the letter and I just broke down in tears, words cannot describe how I felt, I rang my dad and I just kept shouting ‘I’ve got it, I’ve got it’ down the phone.
“I feel as if I have got my life back and I can be proud of what I achieved by losing the weight.
“For so long it was over- shadowed by this problem and now I am not going to let anything hold me back.”
He is hoping for an operation on the upper half of this body before the spring and could go under the knife a second time to remove excess skin from his legs.
The former Corpus Christi High School pupil, who was a keen footballer as a youngster, piled on the pounds before kicking a junk food diet and embarking on a strict gym regime.
He had hoped to go into the Army and had passed initial fitness tests to get in before pulling out after the skin problem left his confidence shot to pieces.
Now, he has enrolled on a training course at Preston College to become a gym instructor and has taken up boxing as part of his fitness regime.
The teen said: “I would not be able to try and apply for the Army again for another year after the operation and then I would have to go through the whole process again.
“I am into boxing now and I really want to focus all my efforts on that and see how far I can get.”
In January, the Central Lancashire Primary Care Trust (PCT) had told the youngster he could not have the operation as it would only be for cosmetic reasons.