A two-year-old boy is back home in Kerry just three weeks after life saving surgery in New York – much to the amazement of his doctors.

Little Liam Heffernan has returned to the family home in Keel, County Kerry, just three weeks after his operation at New York’s Weill Cornel University.

Liam suffers from the rare and fatal disorder Battens Disease which claimed the life of his sister Saoirse just last January.

His parents Tony and Mary opted for his gene transfer surgery in New York as part of a medical treatment trial and, like his doctors, they have been amazed at his recovery.

Surgeons have warned the Heffernans that it is too early to tell if the procedure has been a success or not but all the early signs are impressive.

“His vocabulary has doubled since the surgery and he’s definitely running around far more confidently,” Tony told the Irish Independent.

“We can’t say for definite that it’s down to the surgery but we’re taking all this as a positive.”

The Heffernans are due to return to New York for a check-up in November and are enjoying their return home to Kerry.

“We’re just going to enjoy every minute of him. We always said that if we got even 10 extra minutes with Liam it would have been worth it,” said dad Tony.

“We’ve done all we can for him and now we’re just hoping that it was enough.”

Next Saturday is World Batten’s Day – and would have been Saoirse’s sixth birthday.