A mum has shocked doctors by learning to walk again after a 4x4 fence pole severed her leg in a horror car smash.
Paige Woodhouse's life changed forever when she was involved in a car crash that resulted in a 4x4 fence pole going through her left leg - just a week before her 23rd birthday.
The mother-of-one was told by doctors at the time that her leg might have to be amputated, that she would be in a wheelchair for the rest of her life and that she would "never be able to walk again."
But, five years later - after a total of seven months in hospital and five operations - Paige regularly uses the gym and has retrained her leg to walk again.
Paige, 28, hopes her story will encourage others to "always pick yourself back up, no matter what" and admits her eight-year-old son was her "inspiration during the dark times".
On 29 March 2017, the single mother from Gloucestershire was driving to her three-year-old son's nursery when she was told later on she either "fell asleep" or "passed out" at the wheel.
Paige - who crashed at Junction 13 on the M5 in Stroud - said: "I don't remember what caused the accident - I was on lots of medication for a separate medical problem - but it all happened in a flash.
After a year of recovery, Paige was able to come off antibiotics and her crutches in April 2018 - and a few months later she started going to the gym to build her leg up again.
Despite being told she would be in a wheelchair for the rest of her life, Paige exceeded the doctor's expectations in her rehabilitation progress - and her recovery has been used as a case study for doctors in training.
She said: "I just started building up muscle again - my calf muscle was so skinny at first!
"It was so challenging but I couldn't give up, it just was not an option for me.
"I want to help and show people that life can be hard, and bad things can get thrown at us, but you have to pick yourself up and keep going".
Paige's next goal is to climb Snowdonia for charity, in what she explains is a "mission to show people you can achieve anything that you set your mind to".