WHAT’S BEING CLAIMED:
- A 35-year-old Alabama woman who suffers from a birth defect that causes tumors to sprout on nerves is scared to get them removed.
- The mother-of-four is covered head to toe in thousands of pebble-like tumors that are so painful she can’t wear shoes.
- Ashley Jernigan refuses to get the lumps removed because, in the past, they’ve tended to return even larger and could “turn into cancer.”
A 35-year-old Alabama mother has been gawked at her whole life due to the numerous tumors covering her body. But she won’t get them excised for fear of the growths coming back larger and more dangerous.
Ashley Jernigan suffers from neurofibromatosis — a birth defect that triggers tumors to sprout on nerves — leaving her covered with thousands of pebble-like tumors from head to toe. The tumors are so painful she can’t wear shoes.
Unfortunately, her disease has made her the target of frequent bullying. “When I go out, people stare and make rude gestures,” she told Caters News Agency, adding that “it takes a strong person to overcome what people say.”
Though it’s not contagious, some falsely claim it is, the mother of four said.
The condition has taken its toll on her love life as well. Jernigan doesn’t want to “date because of the stares.” She adds that “it would take a strong man to appreciate me for who I am and look past my condition.”
Despite the numerous life’s bumps, Jernigan refuses to get the lumps removed because, in the past, they’ve tended to return even bigger. And while the bumps are benign, they could “turn into cancer, so I have to keep an eye on them,” said the courageous mother.
Reportedly, the same disease claimed the life of her mother who was also covered in tumors. She dies of neurofibromatosis at the age of 25.
Doctors warned against having children for fear of aggravating the condition. But, Jernigan ignored the advice and had four children, Darnell, 15, Devon, 14, Keonna, 8, and Kaiden, 5, which indeed caused her condition to worsen.
To her dismay, her son Darnell is already exhibiting symptoms of neurofibromatosis. Jernigan was so horrified that she refuses to get her other kids tested because she’s afraid to find out that they have it too.
“I worry about the future, but I try not to think about it because it’s depressing,” Jernigan said.
Source: New York Post