There is good news from the Kendall family in America, where 18-year-old Katherine has undergone three operations on her brain.

In an email from the hospital in Omaha, Nebraska, Katherine's father Nigel says: "Katherine's fine; she's smiling and we are hoping to be back on Oct 1!"

The Frimley Green teenager suffered from severe epilepsy, which hopefully has now been cured after the pioneering operations at the University of Nebraska Hospital.

Said Nigel: "Katherine has been rather swollen around her face, with two black eyes, poor kid! But now she's looking more normal, and thankfully she really doesn't seem to be in any pain.

"She's smiling and regaining her strength day by day. The surgeon was very pleased with both operations.

"When he started, masses of epileptic activity was registered on EEG monitoring equipment, but by the time he had finished on both sides, the EEG was showing no epileptic activity at all. Wow!"

The whole family went to the USA with Katherine and her father, mum (Anna) and brother (Oliver) took turns sitting by her bedside.

They learned that the compounding scar tissue on Katherine's brain, caused by the seizures, showed that there was no alternative to the operations. They have been warned to expect seizures to sometimes occur while Katherine is still healing, and while any inflamation is dying down.

"It may take a couple of months before she is totally fit, but she will have no lasting after effects," says Nigel.

Meanwhile, the people of Omaha took Katherine to their hearts. "We've been on three TV channels and the radio stations," he said. "People here are wonderful. We've received cards and little gifts for Kath and every day people stop us and wish us luck.

"The Omahans have been so kind and generous. The medical staff are also superb. I've never had a brain surgeon call me ‘sir' before!"

Oliver has now returned to the UK, and Nigel and Anna are keeping a six hour rotation so that one of them is always by Katherine's side. "There have been times when we've been close to total exhaustion, but have somehow managed to find that extra ounce of energy from somewhere," said Nigel.

Picture: Katherine Kendall recovering in hospital in Omaha, Nebraska, after three brain operations.