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In what could be termed an extremely rare condition, a woman in South Africa has given birth to a baby girl who 'looks far older than her.' The incident has been reported from South Africa's Eastern Cape province where a young mentally challenged woman gave birth to a baby with an extremely rare medical condition, according to News24. It further stated that the baby, born in June at a village near Libode, is reportedly suffering from progeria, also called Hutchinson-Gilford syndrome. After the news caused a stir in the area, Siphokazi Mani-Lusithi, a member of the Eastern Cape Provincial Legislature, urged the people to support and help the family instead of mocking the newborn, reported News 24.
The medical experts claimed that it's an extremely rare progressive genetic disorder that causes children to age rapidly and makes them look far older than their age. They claimed that it is one of the syndromes that starts in the womb with symptoms visible at birth, News24 reported. It further noted that the family was devasted and shocked to see that picture of the baby went viral on social media with people making fun of the child's appearance. Speaking to News24, the 55-year-old grandmother of the baby said that she immediately noticed that the child was different as her skin was wrinkled and she appeared like an older woman. She added that both mother and child were rushed to Mhlakulo clinic, from where they were referred to Dr Malizo Mpehle Hospital for further observation.
According to News 24, even the baby was born in June; the news surfaced only the previous week when the child's photo was doing rounds on social media. Since then, several senior officials from the development department have visited the family to know the condition of the mother and the child and to help them accordingly. Speaking to News24, Human Settlements MEC Nonceba Khontsiwe's spokesperson, Yanga Funani, said they got a complaint that the family was living in chronic conditions, officials were sent to verify that, as part of the standard procedure before taking any action.