An eight-year-old boy has left doctors baffled after his hands swelled to giant proportions and now weigh more than two stone. Young Kaleem, from India, is unable to carry out simple tasks, including tying his own shoe laces, after he was born with hands twice the size of an average baby.
His mother Haleema, 27, said she knew he was different at birth but was powerless to help and the youngster’s hands have now grown so large they measure 13 inches from the base of his palm to the end of his middle finger. The cricket fan said he has been bullied and shunned most of his life because others are ‘scared’ of his deformity.
He said: ‘I do not go to school because the teacher says other kids are scared of my hands.’Many of them used to bully me for my deformity. They would say “let’s beat up the kid with the large hands”.’Some of them have actually beaten me and would go after me often.
‘I find it difficult to put on my clothes, button my shirt and pull up my pants. ‘But I don’t know if I want doctors to operate on my hands. They would have to make me unconscious and then they would cut me open.
‘I have no problem if they could do it without an injection. A small operation would be okay.’ His parents, who earn just £15 a month, have been desperately trying to find help for their son – but to no avail.
His mother, who has other children who do not suffer from the same condition, said: ‘When Kaleem was born his hand was twice the size of a normal baby’s. ‘His hands were big and his fingers were long. Initially his fists were small but they began to grow large as well and his fingers also kept growing.’
His father, Shamim, 45, who works as a labourer, is worried his son will never be independent and blames himself for not earning enough money.
‘He has difficulty feeding himself because his fist does not bend properly – so we have to feed him,’ he said. ‘Using two fingers he is able to pick up some things like a glass of water to drink.
‘We want to take him to the hospital but there have been times when money has been so low that my wife has been forced to go begging. ‘In that kind of financial situation, getting treatment for Kaleem was difficult.
‘Even when I tried to get Kaleem into the school, the headmaster told me to put in writing that the school would not be responsible if the other children were afraid of his hands or bullied him or laughed at him.’