British brain tumour boy Ashya King leaves intensive care in Prague hospital

Ahsya King in an undated picture released by Britain's Hampshire Police on Aug 29, 2014 after his parents removed him from a hospital in Britain in August against doctors' wishes, sparking an international manhunt. Ashya has left inten
Ahsya King in an undated picture released by Britain's Hampshire Police on Aug 29, 2014 after his parents removed him from a hospital in Britain in August against doctors' wishes, sparking an international manhunt. Ashya has left intensive care after undergoing potentially life-saving proton beam therapy, the hospital in Prague where he was treated said on Friday. -- PHOTO: AFP
Ashya King, a five-year-old British boy with a brain tumour whose disappearance in August sparked an international manhunt, lies on a stretcher as he arrives with his parents at Motol hospital in Prague on Sept 8, 2014.  Ashya has left inte
Ashya King, a five-year-old British boy with a brain tumour whose disappearance in August sparked an international manhunt, lies on a stretcher as he arrives with his parents at Motol hospital in Prague on Sept 8, 2014.  Ashya has left intensive care after undergoing potentially life-saving proton beam therapy, the hospital in Prague where he was treated said on Friday. -- PHOTO: REUTERS

PRAGUE (AFP) - Five-year-old British brain tumour patient Ashya King has left intensive care after undergoing potentially life-saving proton beam therapy, the hospital in Prague where he was treated said Friday.

The thirtieth and last of the sessions will take place on Oct 24, said Jana Kulhankova, spokeswoman of the Proton Therapy Centre of Prague.

"Ashya left the intensive care unit on Tuesday and has been put in an individual room," she said.

He has "started to put on weight, he is smiling, and he is reacting to the gestures of his parents and those close to him," he said.

Ashya's case made headlines after his parents removed him from a hospital in Britain in August against doctors' wishes, sparking an international manhunt.

He began treatment in Prague in mid-September, where he is put under general anaesthetic for the therapy, which is not available in Britain.

It is touted as more precise than conventional radiotherapy as it uses a proton beam to target only malignant cells in a highly precise manner.

Ashya arrived in Prague on Sept 8 from Spain where his parents had taken him after whisking him away from Southamption General Hospital in England because they feared that traditional radiotherapy would damage his brain.

His parents were detained in Spain on an international warrant, after British authorities suspected they were not acting in the best interests of the child.

But after the couple spent four days in a Spanish prison, a British court reunited them with their son in a Spanish hospital and allowed them to travel to Prague for the treatment.