Genetic diseases are a white spot in medicine. Doctors still cannot find a cure for them and prevent their occurrence. Benjamin Button Syndrome is one such disease. The story of a woman suffering from rapid aging is touching and sad. Regardless of everything, she tries to live every day as the last, realizing that tomorrow may not come.
Find out how an unusual young "old woman" lives and what helps her to enjoy every day.
Tiffany Wedekind, 41, of Columbus, Ohio, suffers from a rare genetic disorder that affects one in 50 million. The woman was diagnosed with Progeria at the age of 20. This syndrome is observed in only 156 people around the world.
It is special because children who are diagnosed with this in the first two years of their life rarely live to be 12 years old. Tiffany is the "oldest" of all those suffering from this syndrome.
The mother of the young "old woman", Linda, is over 70 years old. Medicine claims that she is the carrier of the gene that causes Benjamin Button syndrome, but the woman does not show symptoms of the disease.
Miss Wedekind had a brother, Chad, who passed away from the disease seven years ago, at the age of 39. Now the whole family is afraid of losing Tiffany.
The woman suffers from tooth decay, hair loss and heart problems. She weighs only 26 kilograms.
But the yoga lover lives as active a life as possible. She works as the director of a cleaning company. In addition, the woman founded a small candle factory.
Tiffany says her brother's death opened her eyes to how she should live the rest of her life.
Dr. Kim McBride, a geneticist at Columbus National Children's Hospital, calls Miss Wedekind a "special case." He first met her and her brother Chad 10 years ago and took control of them.
Children born with Progeria look like normal babies during the first year of life. But over time, signs of early aging begin to appear - hair loss, growth retardation and other symptoms.
As a teenager, Tiffany noticed that she and her brother were growing slower than other children, but did not pay much attention to this. The alarm was sounded when Chad was diagnosed with heart problems and he broke his thigh bone.
The girl began to notice that something was amiss when her teeth and hair began to fall out. The young woman developed wrinkles and the skin lost its elasticity. Now Tiffany has almost no real teeth left, she has heart problems.
Miss Wedekind can be considered lucky compared to other people with Benjamin Button Syndrome. She even does yoga to support her immune system and keep her body flexible.
The woman loves to dance, hang out with friends and travel. Tiffany leads a very active lifestyle, and her parents are proud of their strong-spirited daughter. They worry every day that the fate of her brother does not befall her, but they rejoice at her success and dedication.
“I do not consider my case to be a phenomenon. I know that I am special and I am not going to complain about fate. I am what I am, and I live like everyone else”,
Miss Wedekind's secret of a positive attitude to a difficult life and to her condition is simple: to love family and friends, to look at the world with open eyes and with an open heart. You need to try to find positive in every day and not pay attention to minor troubles, because life is very short. And these tips are not only for those who suffer from progeria, but for all of us.