Doctors in Miami will remove the Cuban teen's benign tumor, which threatens to suffocate the boy.
Doctors have agreed to remove a basketball-sized tumor growing on the face of a 14-year-old boy, and his parents hope it will help return him to a life of some normalcy. Emanuel Zayas suffers from a condition called polyostotic fibrous dysplacia, which is when the body replaces tissue with bone on occasion, and that can result in significant deformities.
The boy, who is from Cuba, has obtained a medical visa to go to Miami and be operated on by doctors. The tumor initially looked like a pimple on his nose three years ago, but what was actually happening is that skull bone was starting to grow from his upper jaw. It eventually swelled to 10 pounds and it currently covers his entire face.
While the tumor is benign, its continued growth threatens to suffocate Emanuel. Surgeons will remove the tumor within a month, which hopefully will allow him to see and eat normally again.
“Emanuel Zayas, 14, was born with a disorder called polyostotic fibrous dysplasia, a condition that replaces multiple areas of bones with fibrous tissue and may cause fractures and deformity of the legs, arms, and skull,” reads a statement from the Jackson Health Foundation. “In his case, the condition began affecting his left arm and leg at age 4. For the most part, Emanuel continued to live a normal and healthy life in his native Cuba. But at age 11, Emanuel noticed what appeared to be a zit growing on the left side of his nose. The bump continued to grow excessively and was later identified as an ossifying fibroma – an extremely large benign tumor that now weighs approximately 10 pounds, and is the size of a basketball. The tumor has taken over his face, and has severely affected the bone structure of his upper jaw and nose.”