Sunday, February 12, 2012

Siblings from India don't expect to marry due to 'werewolf syndrome' Heartbreak of three India sisters (via Peter Park)


THE NEW YORK POST, Thursday, February 9, 2012, p. 25

These three sisters in India have dreams of getting married, but are caught
in a nightmare - each is cursed with an extremely rare genetic disorder
sometimes called "werewolf syndrome."

There are only a few hundred cases in the world of hypertrichosis
universalis, which results in excessive hair over the body and for which
there is yet no cure.

The Raut sisters, Savita, 23, Monisha, 18, and Savitri, 16, of Sangli, a
small village in central India, use a special hair-removal cream, but the
hair grows back quickly on their brow.

"Marriage is not an option for us; it's not likely to happen," Savita was
quoted as saying by the Daily Mail Online. "Who is going to marry us when
hair keeps growing on our faces?"

The girls' mother, Anita Sambhaji Raut, said the trio inherited the
condition from her late husband.

She said when Savita was a baby, she had "little hairs all over her face."

"When I used to take her out as a child, they used to shout 'Here comes the
beast, the witch!' That's what they said."

The girls' mom said that of her six daughters, three have the condition.

Anita was only 12 when she wed her husband in an arranged marriage, and she
did not see him until the day they tied the knot.

"It was only on the day of my marriage that I discovered what he was; [he]
was hairy on his face, ears and body. That's when I found out," she said.

"I was very young. I didn't know what kind of boy he was.

"He scared the hell out of me when he arrived at the [ceremony]."

Savita said that "when I used to go to school, the boys and girls would
shout, 'hairy face,' 'horrible looking,' 'Don't sit next to her,' that's
how they behaved," the paper quoted her as saying.

Her mother said that Savita tries to hold a job, but "they keep her at work
now for 10 to 15 days, and then after that, they ask her to leave as soon
as the hair starts showing through.

"I tell people this is the type of girl she is - hair grows on her face,
she has to apply medicine."

The mom said she would like to get Savita a husband.

"If a good proposal comes in, I'll get her married. If nothing comes in,
she'll have to work and survive. As long as I am living, I have to keep
trying," Anita said.

A documentary filmmaker is planning to tell the sisters' story, which they
hope could help them raise funds for laser surgery to help them get rid of
the unwanted hair, the newspaper said.

In August, said the sisters were to be treated by
specialists at a hospital in Bangalore, which is getting together a team of
specialists from the United States and Germany to work toward a cure.

The Web site said that only 300 cases of the disorder had been reported
worldwide, and there were only five known cases, including the sisters, in

"These cases are a challenge to the medical fraternity. We hope they find a
cure," said Mansoor Chetlu, coordinator of the New Life Karnataka,
Bangalore Chapter, which is helping the family, according to the site.

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