"I Hate This Boy Who I See Every Day In The Mirror": A 25-Year-Old Man Trapped In A Teen's Body Opens Up About His Daily Struggles

August 29, 2018 14:40

Tomasz Nadolski’s painful struggle

Tomasz Nadolski, a 25-year-old man from Poland, doesn’t look his age. He has a rare genetic disorder called Fabry disease, that left him trapped in a body of a teenager. In one of his interviews, he said:

I am 25 years old and I would like to look like a man of my age. I hate this boy who I see every day in the mirror, because it is not me.

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It all began when Tomasz was 7 years old. He was vomiting after every meal, developed stomach pain, and his hands and feet were hurting. Doctors couldn’t pinpoint the cause of his symptoms, so they said it was all in his head. Tomasz’s parents initially believed the doctors. He said:

My parents were torn. They saw something was going on, but they believed the doctors, that I was mentally ill, and that I should just eat more.

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Tomasz’s rare condition is often misunderstood, and even his family doesn’t seem to get it, so they haven’t been very supportive. Tomasz said:

When I'm at home, I'm just sitting in my room and spending my time alone. I feel lonely and I lack the support of my family, and this is how it has been for many years. The disease has destroyed our family relationships.

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Strangers don’t believe the young man when he tells them his real age. In his interview with The Sun, he shared:

I often suffer sad situations. When I show the ID card in the office, or if the police stops me, they accuse me of having a fake one.

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Looking like a teen is not the only problem Fabry disease causes. Tomasz is on a drip most of the time, as he can’t eat. He also has to take painkillers to alleviate his severe chronic pain, and he has to wear special shoes, since his disease left his feet badly damaged.

Tomasz’s treatment is quite expensive – the medicine costs £170,000 per year. Luckily, the manufacturer supplies Tomasz with the medicine he needs, free of charge.

Uwaga! TVN / YouTube

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What is Fabry disease?

Fabry disease is a rare genetic disorder in which a type of fat, called globotriaosylceramide, accumulates in the body’s organs and tissues. This is due to lacking of a special enzyme, responsible for breaking it (globotriaosylceramide). The condition causes various symptoms throughout the body, and they typically start in childhood.

Fabry disease is more common in men than in women. According to the National Institutes of Health, 1 in 40,000 to 60,000 boys are born with the disorder. /

People with Fabry disease may experience a wide range of signs and symptoms, including widespread pain (especially, in hands and feet), patches of small, red dark spots on the skin, sweating too little, and serious digestive problems. Those affected by Fabry disease are at a high risk of heart problems, kidney problems, and stroke.

Although there’s no cure for this disease, treatments are available to make a patient's life more comfortable.

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