A 28-year-old woman from Zhengzhou, Henan province arrived in Shanghai last week seeking cosmetic surgery after she was diagnosed with a rare condition that has made her appear twice her age.
After giving birth to her first child 11 years ago, Hu Juan’s appearance began changing, as if she was aging prematurely. Although she is only 28 years old, her face appears like that of a woman in her 60s or even 70s, reports Xinhua News.
Hu was diagnosed with a disorder called Cutis laxa, characterized by skin that becomes loose, saggy and wrinkled at a rapid speed due to a loss of elasticity. The effect is only seen in Hu’s face and neck.
Less than 10 people in the world have been diagnosed with the disorder, and only one in China, according to Xinhua. There’s no effective treatment, but plastic surgery could help correct her appearance.
For the past 11 years, Hu’s husband has stood by her side as she’s watched her youthful appearance fade before her eyes. She avoided going outside and looking into a mirror, and noticed that her young son gradually became more distant. He is ashamed to tell his friends that Hu is his mother.
Hu suffers from depression, and once attempted to kill herself. The couple thought that having another child could help, but nothing had changed after the birth of her daughter.
A plastic surgery clinic in Shanghai put together a professional team to help Hu, including a psychologist. Hu said she is hopeful about regaining her youthful looks, although doctors have expressed uncertainty about the results at this stage.
By Dina Li