Woman with Cancerous Facial Mole has Four Balloons Implanted in Her Face to Stretch the Skin
Woman with Cancerous Facial Mole has Four Balloons Implanted in Her Face to Stretch the Skin

She lived normally despite the large birthmark on her face, but doctors told her she had to remove it after it has turned out to be cancerous.
23-year-old Xiao Yan was born with a rare mole, a congenital melanocytic nevus—a type of birthmark that affects around 1% of babies worldwide. Though she lived happily and normally despite the large mole on her face, doctors say she has to remove it as it might turn deadly.
“Despite the big black mole on my face, I enjoyed my childhood playing with my friends,” she said. “I was carefree.
“But as I grew older, the fact that I was ‘different’ became increasingly magnified.”
Doctors are to treat Xiao Yan at the Shanghai Ninth People’s Hospital in east China, fearing that the birthmark could become cancerous. However, removing the large birthmark that covered most of her face isn’t that easy.
Doctors say they have to “stretch” the skin to make it easier to remove. To make this possible, they implanted 4 egg-sized balloons under her skin. They are regularly injected with saline, to gently expand them—stretching the skin as they do.
Xiao’s poor family managed the wholly improbable task of raising £11,177 for the first stage of her treatment in Shanghai, which began in October. But Xiao says it wasn’t easy as the balloons caused her so much pain.
“During the first month of treatment, my face hurt so much because of the egg-sized expanders and the saline injections that I wanted to slam my face into a wall,” Xiao said.“I used to feel sorry for myself,” Xiao said. “But I’ve grown up under the support of my family and now I’m much more positive.”
Her twin brother and the rest of her family are continuing to raise funds for her follow-up surgeries and have managed about £5,588

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