Shocking case of a boy has been capturing the attention of one and all in the medical community,A Colombian child nicknamed 'Turtle Boy' has had surgery to remove the giant mole that covered his back.
The condition, known as Congenital Melanocytic Nevus, is caused by a giant mole and gives Didier the appearance of having a shell – hence his nickname ‘Turtle Boy’. The cause is not known but experts think there is a change in the development of skin cells in the embryo triggered by a gene mutation.
Though the disease affects around 1 in 20,000 newborn babies, this case was touted to be the worst ever seen by a top surgeon.
The Didier Montalvo, six, he and his family was also cast out of its village in his home in rural Colombia in South America, because superstitious people thought Didier's condition was due to evil forces.
There was a chance the growth could turn malignant but Didier's mother Luz could not raise the money for the operation.
But thanks to leading plastic surgeon Neil Bulstrode, who operated on him free after hearing of his plight, he can grow up as any other child.
Mr Bulstrode flew to the Colombian capital Bogotá to help to remove Didier’s birthmark.
The doctors then had to carry out a complicated series of skin grafts over several stages
“Didier’s CMN was the worst case I had ever seen due to the size and bulk of the lesion”, said the surgeon. “Often people have CMN that are much flatter and are therefore much easier to care for and deal with”.
Didier is getting on now.The operation has significantly improved his quality of life.