Meet Didier Montalvo, an eight-year-old boy from Columbia born with a rare skin condition known as Congenital Melanocytic Nevus (CMN) which occurs when a child is born with a large mole. The mole can be any size, typically ranging between 2 to 15cm in size. Now, I know what you might be thinking. “A 15cm wide mole is HUGE!” Well, it turns out that they can actually get much much bigger and Didier Montalvo is unique in that he has one of the worst cases of CMN ever seen by a doctor.
Say hello to Didier.
As you can see, Didier could easily be considered one of the unluckiest people ever born with a mole like that. He was quickly isolated in his village and ostracised by other children his age who frequently referred to him as “Turtle boy” and many of the villagers believed his disfigurement was the result of “dark forces”.
Speaking on this, his mother told reporters, “He felt very bad before the surgery, it impeded him from doing a lot of the activities he enjoyed doing. When he heard people calling him ‘Turtle boy’ he felt very sad and he would ask ‘Why do I have this?’ It was a very difficult question to answer”
The good news is that UK surgeon Neil Bulstrode saw the pictures of Didier online and decided to offer his services for free. The mole on Didier’s back is, after all, just a mole and can be removed. And Bulstrode explained why it was so important to do so.
“One of the main focuses for us was to try and get Didier to feel like he could reintegrate with society.
“But also to relieve the huge weight that he had. It was around 20 per cent of his body weight.
“It was like us carrying around a sack of potatoes and was hugely impinging on his lifestyle.”
Well thankfully the surgery was a success and Didier is now recovering and free of his giant mole.
So, with that being said… now that there’s been a happy ending…
Can I make a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles joke now?
…turtles in a half shell?